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Topic: Work SMART, not hard, Worst advice in the world!< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 3:02 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame recently talked about the advice he got  from his high school guidance counselor who told him to go to college and "Work Smart, Not Hard."  Mike makes a strong argument why that was (and still is) the worst advice EVER.  

He starts out by saying that although a Scout is Clean, he's not afraid to get dirty.  And goes on to show how these two thoughts relate.

LINK

NOTE: Mike's presentation (and the video) is about 30 minutes long.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 3:13 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The idea is to work smart and make your boss think you're working hard.....
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 3:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I saw him expound on this, mentioning the huge debt people incur while attending college.  His idea was college should not be the goal for everyone, but there are very good jobs out there in the blue collar trades that require a vocational school or an apprenticeship.  Nothing wrong with hard, dirty, work.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 4:14 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(ol-zeke @ Jul. 23 2013, 3:42 pm)
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I saw him expound on this, mentioning the huge debt people incur while attending college.  His idea was college should not be the goal for everyone, but there are very good jobs out there in the blue collar trades that require a vocational school or an apprenticeship.  Nothing wrong with hard, dirty, work.

Indeed.  And even if you do go to college, there's still nothing wrong with hard, dirty, work.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 4:23 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

And if you're doing hard dirty work, there's nothing wrong with finding a better way to do it.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 4:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(KenV @ Jul. 23 2013, 3:02 pm)
QUOTE
Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame recently talked about the advice he got  from his high school guidance counselor who told him to go to college and "Work Smart, Not Hard."  Mike makes a strong argument why that was (and still is) the worst advice EVER.  

He starts out by saying that although a Scout is Clean, he's not afraid to get dirty.  And goes on to show how these two thoughts relate.

LINK

NOTE: Mike's presentation (and the video) is about 30 minutes long.

I don't know... so Mike took your basic dirty grunt job, made a popular TV show where he just had to do it for a couple of hours, maybe a day at most, and makes a lot more money.

College aside, seems to me he's the perfect example of "work smart, not hard".

(Haven't seen the video; I'm at work and can't really watch it.)


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 6:28 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 6:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

As an owner of a custom manufacturing business, I can tell you I have made a lot more money by working smarter than harder - and I also work a lot less hours per year than someone with the opposite attitude.

But yeah, if you're content to be a worker bee ... then the quote you mention is at first glance correct. No sense knowing that you're making your boss tons of money. Ignorance is bliss.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 6:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(ol-zeke @ Jul. 23 2013, 3:42 pm)
QUOTE
I saw him expound on this, mentioning the huge debt people incur while attending college.  His idea was college should not be the goal for everyone, but there are very good jobs out there in the blue collar trades that require a vocational school or an apprenticeship.  Nothing wrong with hard, dirty, work.

I've done hard dirty work for more than 30 years. Both houses are paid for, all vehicles are paid for, haven't had any outstanding debt for some time. Never went to college, but did attend University of Hard Knocks. Started out at minimum wage and went up from there.
I really enjoy my trade. You are what you make yourself, and you really don't need college to have a reasonably comfortable life. Just have to be willing to work hard, and GET smarter as you go.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 6:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Those 2 things are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 7:07 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(cowgiano @ Jul. 23 2013, 4:54 pm)
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Those 2 things are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

Yeah, this.

I agree partly with the "college isn't necessarily needed" point.  It really depends what you want to do with said degree.  If the only goal is to "get a job that will allow me to live a comfortable life", that in itself isn't a great reason to go to college.  And as Mike Rowe points out, it isn't really necessary either.  However, if you really hope to be a lawyer, a college professor, a surgeon or even a school teacher, "good luck" if you don't have the initials behind your name and the specialized education it took to get them.

Being smart has nothing to do with going to college, or not going to college.  The two are orthogonal traits.  Too many seem to conflate the two in either direction.


ETA:  But before we get side-tracked on ideals, keep in mind the hard stats on non-college vs. college educated individuals in the general case, which kinda refutes Mike Rowe's opinion a bit:
QUOTE
What does a $64,000 investment return in dividends? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, not only is there a $400 per week difference in earnings between those with a high school diploma and those with a bachelor’s degree, there is also a substantial difference in unemployment. As of the end of 2011, high-school only workers were unemployed at a rate of 9.4% while those with a bachelor’s degree had an unemployment rate of 4.9% (4.1% as of July 2012). Most interesting is the fact that the total cost of degree acquisition ($64,000) is repaid through the increased, salary ($1600 per month, or $19,200 per year) in less than four years. Not a bad ROI, and with a 50% increase in job security to boot. The difference between a degree holder’s earnings and those of a high school-only worker are sizeable over a lifetime. According to the U.S. Government Info Web site, “… a high school graduate can expect, on average, to earn $1.2 million; those with a bachelor’s degree $2.1 million; and people with a master’s degree $2.5 million.”

A paragraph snipped from http://www.forbes.com/sites....-degree


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 23 2013, 7:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(big_load @ Jul. 23 2013, 6:28 pm)
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To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.

And have a management system above you who recognizes it and provides rewards/incentives.

Currently I do not have that and the entire team's lack of motivation is becoming more apparent to everybody but the bosses.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 7:45 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(big_load @ Jul. 23 2013, 6:28 pm)
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To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.

Which was exactly what Mike said.  To really succeed, we need to work smart AND hard.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 10:41 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I think it means don't make you're job any smarter than it really is. Which is hard to do if you're a ditch digger.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 12:22 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Or in the case of one Mike once stooped for pretend to do both and do next to nothing and reap obsecene benefits at the expense of everyone else.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 12:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(double cabin @ Jul. 24 2013, 10:22 am)
QUOTE
Or in the case of one Mike once stooped for pretend to do both and do next to nothing and reap obsecene benefits at the expense of everyone else.

The grammar in this sentence makes it nearly impossible to tell what you're trying to say.

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(GoBlueHiker @ Jul. 24 2013, 12:54 pm)
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(double cabin @ Jul. 24 2013, 10:22 am)
QUOTE
Or in the case of one Mike once stooped for pretend to do both and do next to nothing and reap obsecene benefits at the expense of everyone else.

The grammar in this sentence makes it nearly impossible to tell what you're trying to say.

Not to mention the run ons, non sequiturs, ad hominem and drunkenness.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 1:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You're working too hard gentlemen.

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(big_load @ Jul. 23 2013, 4:28 pm)
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To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.

I guess that depends on your definition of successful

Does more vacation time to go backpacking factor into the equation?
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 1:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I've seen far too many people given the simple job of moving a rock pile, carrying the rocks to a wheelbarrow, instead of moving the wheelbarrow to the rock pile. Some of them were college students. Everyone can get more work done, if they think about how best to do it. Implying anything else is moronically wasteful of effort. The worst manager I ever worked for was a landscape architect that was always in a hurry to complete each task, without thinking strategically about the entire job. We wasted far too much time moving materials multiple times or having to go back to the shop for needed tools. Educated people aren't necessarily smarter then someone that just knows how to work.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 2:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Lamebeaver @ Jul. 24 2013, 1:09 pm)
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(big_load @ Jul. 23 2013, 4:28 pm)
QUOTE
To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.

I guess that depends on your definition of successful

Does more vacation time to go backpacking factor into the equation?

I certainly think so.  But for some people that would not factor in at all.
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(Ecocentric @ Jul. 24 2013, 11:42 am)
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I've seen far too many people given the simple job of moving a rock pile, carrying the rocks to a wheelbarrow, instead of moving the wheelbarrow to the rock pile. Some of them were college students. Everyone can get more work done, if they think about how best to do it. Implying anything else is moronically wasteful of effort. The worst manager I ever worked for was a landscape architect that was always in a hurry to complete each task, without thinking strategically about the entire job. We wasted far too much time moving materials multiple times or having to go back to the shop for needed tools. Educated people aren't necessarily smarter then someone that just knows how to work.

I don't think I have ever heard the phrase "work smart, not hard". What I have heard is "work smarter, not harder" and I always interpreted it in the way Eco mentioned. More task related than life ambition related.

IMO, find your passion and do whatever the heck it takes to achieve it.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 7:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

An electrician working for Local 48 in Portland makes $35 an hour, with a good pension, good health insurance, and some other benefits.  They get no paid sick days, or paid vacations, or holidays, as they are expected to budget for their time off.  Unemployment has a direct relation to their ability to demonstrate skills, both task oriented and people skills.  Not sure how many degrees can offer the same, with just 5 years of a few classes and OJT.  

Now, I am not dissing education, and GBH certainly makes a few good points about career choices, but those statistics about HS ed vs College degree are certainly not talking about the trades.  


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 7:29 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(ol-zeke @ Jul. 24 2013, 5:21 pm)
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Now, I am not dissing education, and GBH certainly makes a few good points about career choices, but those statistics about HS ed vs College degree are certainly not talking about the trades.

I made it a point to emphasize "in the general case," since there are obviously a lot of exceptions on either side.  You know OZ I have a ton of respect for the work you've done and the life you've been able to live as a result of it, in a lot of ways.

OTOH, one can pick out doctors, nurses, lawyers, etc to paint the same picture on the other side, in professions where degrees are required.


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(Lamebeaver @ Jul. 24 2013, 1:09 pm)
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(big_load @ Jul. 23 2013, 4:28 pm)
QUOTE
To be really successful, it helps to work smart AND hard.

I guess that depends on your definition of successful

Does more vacation time to go backpacking factor into the equation?

Sure.  That may come in the form of traditional paid vacation, or other types of time not working.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 24 2013, 8:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Then there is the old adage, "if you have a hard job, give it to your laziest worker, he'll find the easiest way to get it done".

Which I have found isn't really true.


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(Chuck D @ Jul. 24 2013, 8:47 pm)
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Then there is the old adage, "if you have a hard job, give it to your laziest worker, he'll find the easiest way to get it done".

Which I have found isn't really true.

If you need to get something done, give it to the busiest person.
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(Wailer @ Jul. 24 2013, 3:04 pm)
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(Ecocentric @ Jul. 24 2013, 11:42 am)
QUOTE
I've seen far too many people given the simple job of moving a rock pile, carrying the rocks to a wheelbarrow, instead of moving the wheelbarrow to the rock pile. Some of them were college students. Everyone can get more work done, if they think about how best to do it. Implying anything else is moronically wasteful of effort. The worst manager I ever worked for was a landscape architect that was always in a hurry to complete each task, without thinking strategically about the entire job. We wasted far too much time moving materials multiple times or having to go back to the shop for needed tools. Educated people aren't necessarily smarter then someone that just knows how to work.

I don't think I have ever heard the phrase "work smart, not hard". What I have heard is "work smarter, not harder" and I always interpreted it in the way Eco mentioned. More task related than life ambition related.

IMO, find your passion and do whatever the heck it takes to achieve it.

^^^^THIS^^^^

Rumi     <~~~~~hardly smart


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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 25 2013, 11:12 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(RumiDude @ Jul. 24 2013, 9:26 pm)
QUOTE

(Wailer @ Jul. 24 2013, 3:04 pm)
QUOTE

(Ecocentric @ Jul. 24 2013, 11:42 am)
QUOTE
I've seen far too many people given the simple job of moving a rock pile, carrying the rocks to a wheelbarrow, instead of moving the wheelbarrow to the rock pile. Some of them were college students. Everyone can get more work done, if they think about how best to do it. Implying anything else is moronically wasteful of effort. The worst manager I ever worked for was a landscape architect that was always in a hurry to complete each task, without thinking strategically about the entire job. We wasted far too much time moving materials multiple times or having to go back to the shop for needed tools. Educated people aren't necessarily smarter then someone that just knows how to work.

I don't think I have ever heard the phrase "work smart, not hard". What I have heard is "work smarter, not harder" and I always interpreted it in the way Eco mentioned. More task related than life ambition related.

IMO, find your passion and do whatever the heck it takes to achieve it.

^^^^THIS^^^^

Rumi     <~~~~~hardly smart

There are a lot of folks VERY passionate about the arts; dancing, music, painting, acting, etc.


Making a decent living at these passions is VERY unlikely, no matter how pasionate the individual, or how smart and hard they work at it.
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(KenV @ Jul. 25 2013, 9:12 am)
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Making a decent living at these passions is VERY unlikely, no matter how pasionate the individual, or how smart and hard they work at it.

I know a number of folks who do exactly that.  Is it easy?  No.  They're very talented and very dedicated at what they do though, and they find ways make it work.

I agree that most people who start out in that direction (the arts and humanities), don't end up making livings from it.  But I disagree very much that they wouldn't succeed at it "no matter how passionate the individual, or how smart and hard they work at it."  That notion is popular among  people who gave up on their dreams a long time ago.  I can't say anything personal about you Ken, but I find that type of attitude poisonous.

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