Sma/Hard: Where Smart Work Meets Hard Work

I was recently read an interesting blog about “the importance of giving a damn” about what you do.

I vehemently try to express this sentiment to my team. The significance of being passionate about what one does for a living is . For me, this is the essence of being successful – passion. I absolutely love what I do and I hope that I am translating this passion to my team in the form of tangible examples – hard work, innovation, creativity, drive, consistency and persistence.

Whenever I get a chance to speak to a VC,  the common denominator that is prevalent in their list of “must haves” is, passion. The VC wants to believe in the person before he/she believes in the person’s business plan.

sma:hard work

So, how does one “give a damn?” We can argue semantics all day but it boils down to three main categories (at least for me).

  1. Work Sma/hard. Working hard is not the only component of attempting to achieve something great. You have to be smart in understanding how you are working. In other words, my parents’ adage of “working hard” is not enough in this marketplace. It’s about spending your time effectively, being mindful of what projects you engage and remembering that everything has an ROI associated with it, including your time.
  2. Two, follow through with every project. There are two components to this. First, don’t take on too many projects at the same time or at least have clear timelines that can reasonably be adhered to. If you are part of a team, let your team leader know that you have too many assignments if warranted. Don’t run into his or her office pulling your hair out, but make them aware of your pipeline. Often, a team leader or project manager may not be fully cognizant of everything you have going on. Second, make sure you finish the projects you take on OR projects assigned to you. Nothing will weigh you down more than having too many pending projects simultaneously open.
  3. Perhaps most important of all, be a team player. This is the best way you can show that you “give a damn.” Don’t just say you are a team player, be a team player. Your actions speak much louder than your words. We often forget that we are part of a larger organism, and it’s only our collective contributions to the whole that aids us in achieving our goals.

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