Smart work Vs Hard work: 8 Tips that you must apply to work smartly

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“Hard work can hit smart work when smart work does not work hard.”

We often see in our life that hard-working people do not get that success in one year which smart people get in just 2-3 months… why and how? What is really smart work and what are the tips for working smart instead of work hard?

The concept that you should work smart, not only hard is not new, but both have little difference.  Smart work defines as working all the time and effort in a certain task and goal. While hard work defines as doing things that need to be done, even if doing those things is not pleasant or directly rewarded. 

For example; When NASA astronauts found out that pen wouldn’t work at ZERO gravity, they work hard to solve this problem and invent a pen that works at Zero gravity and spend $12 million, on the other hand, Russia works smartly and uses a pencil to solve this problem.

Another example; A Japanese company received a complaint that consumers got an empty soapbox. Immediately authority asked their engineers to solve this problem. Engineers work hard and invent the X-ray machine attached with a monitor to see and make sure that they were not empty. No doubt they work hard but spend a huge amount to do so.

While the same problem experienced by small business, but they did not invest a huge amount in an X-ray machine, they used a strong industrial fan to solve this problem smartly. When every soapbox passes the fan, it simply blew the empty boxes out of line. 

Here some analyzed 8 tips to work smart, but don’t forget smart work, work not without hard work. 

1. Train your brain for creative work:

We are living in a post-information age, where the future belongs to the creative class and people follow the environmental values of rapid technology, higher education, tolerance, transparency, and meaningful work. In the creative world, where the brain leads, physical work has low value but is valuable.

If you want to work smart in this creative world, your brain muscle must be as strong as possible to make an impossible task possible. For this, you have to constantly train your brain muscles the challenge it to a new level. Analytical and creative mind grooming is very important.

Things that smart people do;

  • They constantly train their mind by writing down ideas, art, or music, etc.
  • They train the analytical mind by doing mind mapping and analyzing different subjects.
  • They constantly read different things and connect them in a new way.
  • They make themselves good in technical work, as technology is big leverage to work smart.
  • They learn how to think in a new way and question everything.
  • They never stop gaining knowledge and stay curious.

2. Seek life management skills:

Being an educated and intellectually skillful person, and doing creative work is only the first part of smart work. The second part has life management skills.  

Life management skills are not what you learn in school, college, or university; it is the thing that you acquired with time and make the right decisions. 

Things which can manage your life;

  • You must learn how to manage life, money, and family, and get a financial education.
  • Take care of yourself with exercise and diet.
  • Carefully choose your partner, it is the most important decision of your life.
  • Having deep relationships with your family, friends, and partner, make you feel stronger inner security and a feeling of happiness, and help you to make smart decisions at work.

3. Time management skills:

Life management skills highly depend on time management. Smart workers know that time is the most precious thing they have. They value their time the most and always manage their time wisely.

The best time management guide article helps you to become smarter at work and get effective results.

Here are some points on how to manage your time;

  • Eliminate and minimize distractions from life.
  • Focus on 20% of tasks that can lead you to 80% progress.  
  • Don’t let urgent tasks get in the way of important tasks.
  • Don’t spend your time on social media that only gives you a false feeling of productivity.
  • Don’t multitask at a time and energy, divide and manage your time according to the priority-wise.
  • Focus on solutions, not on problems.

4. Always know what you want:

Successful individuals always know what they want and have a big picture in the minds of their desired goals. Because knowing what you want helps to build an effective strategy and make better choices in the process. 

Smart people know what they want and they fight for it with hard work. At the same time, Hard worker has unclear ideas of what they want and can not make the best decisions.

If you want to work smart;

  • Always know your final game or the outcome.
  • Think about how to achieve the best with the least amount of effort possible legally and morally.
  • Just working hard is not enough, working hard with knowing a destination is important.
  • Always analyze and listen to yourself before you act.

5. Looking at the positive aspect of life:

It is a very important component of smart work always to have a positive outlook on life, no matter how hard the situation is. Such as you can not live a positive life with negative thoughts, so you can not be a smart worker with a negative and pessimistic outlook. 

Because when you are facing negative emotions, your creativity, and thinking perspective contract, and you can’t see a positive side. Seeking positive thinking helps you to build opportunities and ideas that would take you a step forward.

Positive thoughts that you should think;

  • Deal and train your cognitive thinking.
  • Note down all the opportunities you have, no matter how difficult to achieve it and try to chase them with smart work.
  • Ask yourself what will be a positive effect of any difficult situation, and list all the possible ideas to get that positive effect.
  • Stay positive and keep your mind open because minds only work when it is open.

6. Selecting the right opportunities at the right time:

It is most difficult to select the right opportunities at the right time. Therefore smart people carefully select the opportunities. Because they don’t have any problem saying “NO”.  Having patience and waiting for the right thing with low risk and at the right time is always valuable.

You should carefully think about what would be the right outcome if you engage in any opportunities. And what could go wrong and how much you will lose. As smart people always calculate every single dollar or time they own.  

7. Focusing on creating, delivering, and reward:

Be organized and having good management skills improve your capacity for smart work along with hard work. 

Creating, delivering, and rewarding are the three things that can enhance your smart productivity. The first thing is creating value means to be innovating in a new way to find a solution or thing.

The second is delivering value, delivering what you want to achieve and how you did the things.

And the third one is a reward, reward in the sense of success, money, and appreciation are important to increase your smartness.  

8. Control:

The smart workers have one thing in common control. If you are a smart worker, then you must know when and where you have to show control in yourself, in emotions, in decisions, in leverage, and in the situation.

Hard worker is reactive in the sense of insecurity that they miss an opportunity, or someone will take advantage of them. While a smart worker is proactive and works according to the situation and environment, and make decisions more rationally because they trust themselves.


We are nothing but a biological system that operates this social system. Understanding the biological system and working smartly or hardly according to the capacity to get a maximum result is important.

Smarter people understand the system and know how to get to their goals faster and cheaply. Or you can say that ” the better you understand the system, the smarter you can work.”