Bill Gates famously said he would always ‘choose a lazy person to do a difficult job’ at Microsoft ‘because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.’
Despite Bill’s point, when it comes to work there is an attitude that if we appear to work really hard and are super busy, we will succeed. But are we busy doing the right things or are there smarter ways to conserve our energy and succeed? This culture of always being ‘busy’ has got us thinking about the big issue of ‘busyness’ – especially when it comes to managing people – and we believe we have a simple solution: ‘work lazy’.
There’s a difference between being lazy and ‘working lazy’. Being lazy means you avoid work at all costs, however ‘working lazy’ means you work smarter. When you ‘work lazy’ you concentrate on the things that matter, you prioritise tasks that help your business grow, you free up time to think and develop yourself, your productivity increases and you tend to end up happier and more satisfied with life.
With every technological breakthrough comes the promise of increased efficiency and a potentially easier life. What used to take days or even months can now be achieved in a matter of minutes, if not seconds. As we enter the era of automation, there are incredible opportunities for businesses to become revolutionarily efficient. So how do we make sure we benefit from this revolution?
I’m a firm believer on focusing on one task at a time as we are most productive when we focus effectively on the task at hand and do not multi-task. So don’t try to do everything yourself. Look at what you’re best at and then consider what to do with your other tasks. When it comes to cutting down tasks you have three options: delegate, outsource or automate.
It’s crucial for businesses to recognise the talent they have and invest in training and development opportunities so if you want to ‘work lazy’ then it’s essential that you take some of the pressure off both your staff and yourself; lead by example, don’t micromanage everything and delegate. Trust is a big factor in this. Do you trust your team to get on with the work? If you do then set the objectives, let them get on with the work and drive value for themselves. Even if you’ve done it a thousand times before, it’s important you don’t step in as it’s the best way for the team to develop and learn.
Outsource or Automate
I really believe employees are a business’s most important asset. They help make the business a success through their drive and commitment so when thinking about creating a company culture devoted to ‘working lazy,’ the holy grail has to be automation. However, not everything can be automated and many tasks still require various degrees of human interaction and effort. In these cases, you need to aim to streamline using a software system. By doing so, often-laborious tasks are condensed into one slick process and much of the manual leg work is removed.
Software systems are a great way of doing this as they can automate some of your most labour-intensive processes, and over complicated ways of working can be reduced from hours, or even days, to minutes.
It’s our mission to help small businesses succeed, to work smarter and to allow them to concentrate on what they’re good at; running their own business. That’s why our software allows businesses to create rotas in minutes rather than hours, check holiday conflicts and approve requests in a matter of clicks, and to streamline employee information by storing it in one easily accessible system in the cloud.
See how BrightHR can help you and your business to ‘work lazy’ by visiting our website – www.brighthr.com.
About the Author
Alan Price is CEO of BrightHR, a pioneering people management software company.
Alan is also a senior director for the multi-award winning employment law consultancy, Peninsula; managing director of Peninsula Ireland and Elected Director & Trustee for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development – CIPD.
His wealth of expertise means he is often sought for advice by business leaders and to provide comment to the media including the Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, BBC, Sky News, Sunday Times, Financial Adviser by the FT, Lloyds, and Santander.