You may have heard it a lot: “working smart is way better than working hard”. And most people with this school of thought think that working hard is sort of mundane. Some go as far as thinking that those who choose to work harder have less functional brain! The hard question here is: is this true? Or is it just a sentimental gibberish? But whatever sentiment that makes more sense to you, let’s take a closer look at it—especially as it affects us financially.


Now what is your take on what, working smart or being smart is? Is being a Chartered Certified Accountant, for example, qualifies you as a smart person? Because you will be undertaking a variety of accountancy services in areas of corporation tax, personal tax, or being an auditor, or even writing educated and informed business plan, or being tax adviser, etc. since you are a qualified accountant and doing due diligence in corporate finance for clients the way qualified accountants do.


On the other hand, what about working harder? Does working harder have nothing to do with working smart? Is there really a clear distinction? And also, do people that work hard and put in more hours not working smartly, or those that work smart not working harder?


It does not have to be complicated or confusing. In fact, it does have a straight-forward and simple answer. And that is precisely what will be discussed here. But a common mistake that most people do is making assumptions based on what is popular without fully putting all the facts into proper consideration. And they end up jumping into uninformed conclusion.


Generally speaking, it is admirable to work harder at achieving something than everyone else, because it is often synonymous with getting ahead of the competition—if it is a business endeavor. People who work harder are often seen putting in longer hours. And they, more often than not, create an atmosphere of someone who is very serious about his/her business.


So, people like to be identified with such a person—in most cases, of course.


On the other hand, someone who is seen to be working smarter is more admired. Why? This group of people is perceived to be using a lot of their brain cells to accomplish their day-to-day task. And so when it comes to efficiency with time, they are more efficient. So it does not take them long hours to get most things done.


They often devise a better method of doing a task that most people have not thought of yet. So they get it done in fewer hours or minutes for that matter. And that does place a clearer distinction on it


But there are cases where no matter what newer method you can come up with, you need to put in a lot of time to get it done. And if you do that, are you not working harder? Of course you are. So someone who is working harder does not necessarily mean he/she is not working smarter. But then there is a difference.