Work Smart, Not Hard!

Work Smart, Not Hard!

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A couple of weeks ago, my manager sent us a quote from Bill Gates that goes: “I will always choose a lazy person to do a difficult job… because he will find and easy way to do it.” His conclusion or the message he understood from this quote was the one you can see as the title of this article: “Work Smart, Not hard”; I immediately agreed with him and furthermore, I felt I needed to find “that way” now that I have started working as a Project Manager.

First, I must tell that usually I try to verify quotes since many people are attributed with original quotations while they are in fact citing someone else quotes or sayings in their speeches. So I found thanks to “Saint Google”, that Bill Gates was really citing Hlade’s Law: “If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy man – he will find an easier way to do it.”; I believe that since it was quoted by Bill Gates is because he had found it to be true and confident enough to quote it in public.

Once I had this clear, my next question was: How could I apply this law to my profession in a successful way. I must admit that I’m used to be smart enough to be lazy. I mean, I usually don’t try to re-invent the wheel, so, since I’m pretty sure someone have had the exact same issues and must have had the same kind of questions in the past or present, most likely someone has actually found a way, solution or answer I could use.

I found two books, written by Peter Taylor to be a good source of information to apply towards achieving my goal of working smart as a Project Manager and I would like to share them with you in case you don’t know them.


“The Lazy Winner: How to do more with less effort and succeed in your work and personal life without rushing around like a headless chicken or putting in 100 hour weeks”, published by Infinite Ideas in 2012, by Peter Taylor.

ISBN: 9781906821890


I really enjoyed the book and got ideas that could expand and apply in my own professional development.


If  you are a Project or Program Manager and want to apply Hlade’s Law in your profession and personal life, I recommend you to read the book: “the Lazy Project Manager and the Project from Hell, by Peter Taylor and Michael Finer published by Infinite Ideas in 2012

ISBN: 9781906821999.

(Both books are freely available for HP employees in Books24x7)

From the Author:

“Welcome to the home of ‘Productive Laziness’

On the following web pages you can read more about what I mean about productive laziness and how you can apply these simple techniques and approaches in your own projects. The major project topics will be covered but from a ‘Productive Lazy’ point of view. I am not, by nature, a lazy person but I do have many other things to do in life, beyond the projects and programs that I manage, and therefore I have learnt the manner in which to balance life, projects and work.

Lazy does not mean Unsuccessful. I am a Lazy Project Manager. You can carry on as you are or you can join me in the comfy chair of life and still get the project results you and your sponsors demand.”

The website quoted before have more information for Project & Program Managers that want to work Smart, not hard. The website can be found here:

Peter Taylor also provides us with the “science behind the Laziness” in the previously mentioned website:

“What is the principle and how can it help?

The Pareto principle (also known as the 80/20 rule) states that for many phenomena 80% of consequences stem from 20% of the causes. The idea has rule-of-thumb application in many places, but it’s also commonly misused, for example, it is a misuse to state that a solution to a problem ‘fits the 80-20 rule’ just because it fits 80% of the cases; it must be implied that this solution requires only 20% of the resources needed to solve all cases…

The Pareto Principle or 80/20 rule can and should be used by every smart but lazy person in their daily life. The value of the Pareto Principle for a project manager is that it reminds you to focus on the 20 percent that matters.”

I hope these books could help you work smart, not hard and I will be glad to get your reviews about the books so we can share them and expand our knowledge though our collective experiences.

If you have ideas for this monthly column, or want to see a topic covered here, please let me know via email: jorge.shailer.baker at 

Download as PDF: Issue #1 – April 2013


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