Working hard vs Working “smart”
Understanding Hard/Smart working
- Staying late in the office regularly
- Often bringing work to home
- Feeling exhausted every day
- Tasks keep getting postponed
Few tips to work smart
- Manage your time appropriately – Managing time appropriately will help in completing tasks in time and avoid procrastination. The best way to manage your time is simply to classify your daily tasks in hand into the following types:
- Important and Urgent – e.g. Priority tasks, and The system crashed, Fire in the server room, etc
- Important and not Urgent – e.g. An important financial tool to be implemented in the software
- Not Important but Urgent – e.g. A marketing call from some bank to sell you a credit card or bank account.
- Not Important and Not Urgent – e.g. Daydreaming
We should try to complete the tasks that fall in the first two classifications and try to avoid tasks that might come under the last two.
- Sharpen your tools – It is important to keep on updating the tools that you use in your daily tasks. For, e.g; if you are a lumberjack, you might think of sharpening your saw regular, also investing in more up-to-date hardware that makes your job easy. For some people, their tool would be knowledge, e.g. A Software Engineer should learn continuously to improve the quality and quantity of his work.
- Take breaks / Go for a Vacation – Relaxation is as important as your work. If you keep on working without any breaks thinking that it might make you more productive, then you are wrong. Having a bit of fun will vitalize your mind and helps it to think.
- Organize yourself – Organizing your things properly would save time and gives a good feeling because you don’t have to get mad if you can’t find your things. This applies to the files and folders on your computer.
- Share your knowledge with others – When you share your knowledge, you remove a lot of dependency on you and you get time to explore other stuff and to improve yourself.
- Delegate tasks to the ‘Domain Experts’ – If there is an issue in a domain that you have no or less knowledge, leave it for the domain experts to solve. Spending time on tasks that you cannot handle will kill time and make you frustrated.
- Learn from your mistakes – Mistakes are not always bad. It is only human to err. An error made is not to get disappointed or feel bad about; It is an opportunity to learn and be better.