We've all heard the advice, and for most of our lives: you can do anything, as long as you work hard to get there. Hard work pays off. There are a million quotes about hard work, and I'd tend to agree with most of them. Hard work is important, and it separates you from the majority of the population who aren't motivated enough to work hard for anything.

But I need to commit some slight blasphemy here and say: hard work isn't enough to make your business succeed. The solution to improving your business, or yourself as an entrepreneur, isn't exclusively "hard work"--and here are 10 reasons why:

Hard work can't come up with a good business idea.
Hard work doesn't equate to productivity.
Entrepreneurship is a team sport.
Working hard doesn't always make your work more valuable.
Hard work doesn't yield creativity.
Your competitors work hard, too.
Hard work can't trump experience.
There's a limit to the brute force approach.
Time is money, and it can be wasted.
Hard work will exhaust you.

Does this mean that you shouldn't work hard, or that hard work isn't important? Absolutely not. In fact, hard work is imperative if you want to be a successful entrepreneur. All I'm saying here is that it shouldn't be your only preoccupation, and you need to understand that "hard work" alone isn't the solution for everything. Find paths of least resistance, work smarter, delegate, cooperate, think outside the box, and don't forget to take breaks! Hard work pays off, but only when you do it appropriately.

Published on: Feb 12, 2016