What is your favorite quote about hard work?
From “smart work is not an alternative” to “they can conquer who believe they can,” here are the 15 answers to the question, “What is your favorite quote about hard work?”
- Smart Work Is Not an Alternative
- Hard Work Is More About Sharpening Skills
- Measure Progress—Not the Time That You’re Working
- All Progress Is Outside the Comfort Zone
- Stop Doubt and Make It Happen
- When Rewards Match the Effort, Work Is Easy
- Hard Work Beats Talent When Talent Doesn’t Work Hard
- Bite Off More and Chew Quickly
- Ships Are Not Built for Harbors
- The More I Work, the More Luck I Have
- Achieving Goals Is Not by Chance
- If You’re Going Through Hell, Keep Going
- Success Is a Staircase Not an Elevator
- Never Undervalue What You Do
- They Can Conquer Who Believe They Can
Smart Work Is Not an Alternative
“Smart work is not an alternative to hard work, it is simply an extension of it.” – Anon.“Work smart, not hard” is a phrase that often does the rounds at a workplace, and to be fair, it is catchy enough to make an impression and does make a lot of sense at first glance.
What it doesn’t do is let you in on the fact that smart work is not an alternative to hard work, as this popular saying suggests, but simply an extension of it. It is from hard work and diligence that intelligent solutions are born, so one can never imply that smart solutions are something you opt for when you don’t intend to work hard. It is quite the opposite, really—only when you work hard do you come up with smart solutions!
Riley Beam, Managing Attorney, Douglas R. Beam, P.A.
Hard Work Is More About Sharpening Skills
“Hard work is more about sharpening our skills than delivering workplace results.” – Anon.We often look at hard work as a means to accomplish external targets. At our workplace, this effort is even more important since it is directly associated with your professional image and aligned rewards.
When the goals are external, they cease to offer you comfort, no matter how much importance you attach to them. On the other hand, when the goal is for yourself, it becomes personal and causes a lot less stress and exhaustion.
This is why it is vital to associate your hard work with how it helps you grow personally and professionally. When you see how you develop your skills each day, how every challenge you meet leaves you with more accomplishments, and how every effort results in personal triumphs, the hard work you need to put in will come naturally to you.
Azmaira Maker, Ph.D., Founding Director, Aspiring Families
Measure Progress—Not the Time That You’re Working
“Measure progress—not the time that you’re working.” – Frank Sonnenberg
This is a great way to sum up the concept of SMART Goals in a single sentence. Too many people want to be paid for their time, rather than the value they create. This is fine for an employee. But if you own a business, you need to create value for your customers.
Create some goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timebound. Then compare the outcomes of the work you perform against these goals. If you are improving across a number of metrics, then it’s likely you’re working well. If not, then it may mean that you need to adjust the way you allocate time to different tasks. Focus on those things that have been shown to help you progress towards your goals, and ignore tasks that cost a lot of time but produce little measurable value.
Dennis Consorte, Digital Marketing & Leadership Consultant, Snackable Solutions
All Progress Is Outside the Comfort Zone
“All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.” – Michael John Bobak
It’s a great reminder that you really need to work hard to get somewhere. But it’s also reassuring because even when you’re working hard, and it feels like you still have a thousand miles to go, or you’re afraid it’s all for nothing, you’re still making progress. That’s how you know that your hard work is always valuable.
Nina Joanna, Productivity Expert, Goals Calling
Stop Doubt and Make It Happen
“Stop doubting yourself, work hard, and make it happen.” – Anon
Refrain from letting your self chatter talk you out of your dreams. You will only know your true potential once you start believing in yourself, your abilities, and what you can achieve.Having a big goal can be extremely daunting, and it can mean a mountain of tasks are in your way to achieving results.List smaller day-to-day tasks so you can pace yourself, and iterate your idea. This can help you make it to your long-term goal. Having these tangible milestones will also help eliminate overwhelm, so you don’t give up before you start.
Have people in your network that can keep you accountable and give you subject-specific advice
Bernice Chao, Author, The Visibility Mindset
When Rewards Match the Effort, Work Is Easy
“When rewards match the effort, even hard work becomes easy.” – Anon.
Setting up the right rewards is one of the best ways to take the struggle out of hard work because every effort you undertake seems easier when the incentive is right. This rule applies to you; if you are a leader, remember that this stands true for your team too.
Hard work is when you put in the toil into what you do, but you can always make even the most strenuous efforts seem easier when you are working towards a fruitful end you’re looking forward to.
The reward can be financial, a form of recognition, a personal achievement, or even a list of different advantages for the people around you. When the rewards are good, every effort is worth it, and even hard work becomes easy.
Kris Harris, Owner, Nootka Saunas
Hard Work Beats Talent When Talent Doesn’t Work Hard
“Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” – Tim Notke
This particular quote has stuck with me for a very long time because I’ve seen it come true over and over. Talent is a measure of your starting line—some people start closer to the goal than others but then don’t put in the effort needed to actually run the race while some start further back but build up momentum as they go.
This is particularly apropos in the entrepreneurial world because extremely talented people are quite common, but it is a strong work ethic and the ability to keep going in the face of adversity that usually determines who succeeds and who does not. A bit of luck certainly doesn’t hurt either, but as another famous quote says—the harder I work, the luckier I feel.
Kate Kandefer, CEO, SEOwind
Bite Off More and Chew Quickly
“An entrepreneur tends to bite off a little more than he can chew hoping he’ll quickly learn how to chew it. ” – Roy Ash
When someone embarks on a new journey, they may be fraught with enthusiasm and excitement. This may factor into their decision-making abilities and they may wonder if they’re being too impulsive or optimistic.
While it can be useful to exercise some caution, it’s also crucial to remember the power of hard work to accomplish whatever you choose to take on. This quote reminds you that it’s natural to bite more than you can chew during the initial part of your journey and trust your ability to work hard and flourish at what you’ve taken on.
Asma Hafejee, Sr. Marketing Executive, CMR Surgical
Ships Are Not Built for Harbors
“A ship in the harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” – John A. Shedd
A new journey always demands hard work and embracing what the journey offers. It can be challenging to step out of your comfort zone, but that’s what we’re meant to do, as this quote describes.
A perfect blend of courage and hard work with the right knowledge and skills gives you true experience and self-efficacy that eventually pushes you to grow even further.
Larissa Pickens, Owner, Repeat Replay
The More I Work, the More Luck I Have
“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.” – Thomas JeffersonLuck is a part of life, but the harder you work the more luck you are likely to have. This excellent quote by Thomas Jefferson couldn’t be any more accurate, and I stand behind it. Sometimes I get lucky, but the harder I work the more times I get lucky.
Scott Krager, Founder, TubeSplit.com
Achieving Goals Is Not by Chance
“The achievement of goals does not occur by chance. What it takes is a passion for what you’re doing and a willingness to put in the time and effort to master it.” – PeléI can honestly say that this is one of the best quotes I have ever read about the value of hard work.After 18 years and five crazy world cup tournaments, the GOAT Messi finally won the World Cup this year, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt the truth of that famous saying.While people were putting him down, saying he hasn’t won any international tournaments, he showed them all they were missing was his hard work and timing!
Kartik Ahuja, CEO & Founder, GrowthScribe
If You’re Going Through Hell, Keep Going
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” – Winston Churchill
It can be difficult to push yourself when things get tough, whether it’s in your personal life or professional life. But the light at the end of the tunnel is always there. You just have to dig your way out of it. There will always be obstacles that you’ll face, but you need to work at them to get to the prize.
Lindsay Malu Kido, CEO, Empower Pleasure
Success Is a Staircase Not an Elevator
“Success is a staircase, not an elevator.” – Anon.
People often imagine that achieving fame and fortune happens overnight, but the reality is that it usually takes a lot of hard work and dedication to become successful. The singers on TV who we see as “overnight successes” have been practicing for years, and the horses who win big races have undergone hundreds of hours of training. In other words, the idea of “overnight success” is a myth. Instead of striving for a big win, it’s important to focus on making progress each day, and eventually, success will come.
Andy Ide, Founder & Director, HorseRecords
Never Undervalue What You Do
“When you undervalue what you do, the world will undervalue who you are.” – Oprah Winfrey
Most people understand that success doesn’t happen overnight and that to achieve greatness hard work is a must. However, it’s also important to remember to find value in whatever your current job may be, even if the job is a stepping stone to the next one. Work hard whatever your position and don’t minimize your contribution.
Kenneth Lin, CEO, BOOP Bakery
They Can Conquer Who Believe They Can
“They can conquer who believe they can.” – Publius Vergilius Maro (Virgil)Virgil is perhaps one of the greatest poets of the Roman era, having composed some of the greatest poems in Latin literature. His last epic, The Aeneid took him 11 years to write and as such, there isn’t a better example of a man whose life was defined by hard work and sheer dedication. This is my favorite quote because it stresses the importance of self-affirmation. Hard work without a goal to strive towards and believe in is simply drudgery. To dream is the first step, to believe you can achieve the dream is the second step and using hard work to conquer that dream is the final step.
Shawn Harris, CEO, UniqueGiftCards
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