Has hard work become overrated today?


The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of Rolling Stone’s editors or publishers.

Looking around our company today in 2022, I can’t help but notice something I’d like to share with other business owners, entrepreneurs, and scammers. It seems like everyone is a “boss” and every startup is the next big thing. Between the constant emails from new companies popping up every day and the overdriven voicemails, it seems like our communications are now all hanging on the wires of annoyance.

From my perspective, I feel like honesty has taken a back seat and everyone is looking to make a quick buck. Silver has a way of dressing in such a way that people fall deeply in love with it. Lying and manipulation are just some of the things people are willing to do for the mighty dollar bill. But there is one thing that sits at the top of the list. In my honest opinion, it seems that what some people aren’t willing to do for money is “work hard”. Has hard work become overrated in the society we live in?

I can’t answer these questions for every human being, but I can speak through the prism of my observation. Every day on my way to my bookstore, Darick Books, I stop at Panera Bread for my morning drink. When I get there, I always see a sign on the door apologizing to customers for the lack of staff due to the pandemic. It’s not just at my Panera, but in many stores and restaurants across the country. As an entrepreneur and business owner, I see this as a huge problem: when you can’t find workers to run your business. If companies don’t have workers to help grow their customers, their platform, and their agenda, then how is the business world going to last?

The old way of working was to get up early every morning, press the clock, work hard, then turn off the clock and come home to repeat the same action every day. On the contrary, today someone can simply roll over in bed, grab their computer, and get to work without leaving their comfort zone. Who works the most?

Many equate hard work with the physical and not the mental. I always saw my father getting up early in the morning and coming back later looking tired – and I saw that as hard work. But I’ve learned from personal experience that being on the computer for everything from checking email to joining Zoom calls to research can also be really hard work. There’s nothing wrong with hard work, but it becomes a problem when workers are hard to find.

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Has today’s work model caused a big change in the ability to find hard workers? Is it easier to be an entrepreneur today than in the past 30 years?

These are just a few questions I throw out to my readers. I run a business and outsource experts who do and know things I don’t. I cannot hire these people for a daily 9 to 5 job, but rather for a job that could take three hours or a few months. But other companies, like Panera or Subway, that need daily workers may have deeper problems when it comes to finding employees. Employee expectations may not match the new model of workers simply pulling out their computers and promoting companies on social media. So how can businesses adapt?

The biggest step is accepting that the name of the game has changed and evolving alongside the new way of working. Conduct employee surveys to get a sense of employee sentiment and identify gaps you can work on. I don’t have the answers to everything. I’m an observer and I write about those things that spark curiosity in my mind and in others. But I think collaboration can really be the element we need to ensure the success of this new world of work. We must base our businesses on trust, transparency and authenticity.

Interacting and collaborating with people does wonders for mood. I sometimes have to leave my bookstore during the day just to get some fresh air and that invigorates me. But when I rip off the perimeters of those who are trying to make it big in the business world, I find it very sad that some are trying in vain to be overnight entrepreneurs – who have abandoned the outside world of businesses that have been around for decades .

Survival instinct can sometimes lead individuals to create false promises or even companies that manipulate others in an effort to get that big buck. So my question becomes: Who really works hard? Are you?

I believe hard work never hurt anyone – if hard work is honest. I say a prayer for those who have businesses and those businesses that are trying to survive. I am with you in the fight. Stay honest, keep evolving and never give up.


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