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🎯 Work Smart Wednesday

👋 Hey there!

Here is your weekly dose of Work Smart Wednesday

In these emails I will share with you 3 things to help you work smarter  in 3 minutes or less. That leaves you with 10,077 more minutes to conquer your goals this week

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1. 🦹‍♂️ The biggest opportunity to steal top talent in recent history

There is a HUGE opportunity for small businesses to steal A+ talent from corporations right now. Corporations are making a massive mistake forcing high-performers back into the office.

It is not secret that employees prefer remote work. I won’t bombard you with stats, but a few key insights:

  • Buffer found that 84% of workers prefer remote work to office work. Many are willing to take a significant pay cut in order to work remotely.

  • Contrary to popular opinion, more experienced, older, workers value flexible work arrangements more. It isn’t your rookie Gen Z nephews, it is the heavy hitters.

  • That same McKinsey study showed women have a stronger preference for flexible work arrangements compared to men, though both value it highly, women rank it as the second most important factor when seeking a new job.

  • PwC found 72% of those surveyed want to keep working remotely at least 2 days a week (32% want to work remotely permanently)

You can find more stats here, here, here, and here.

You should be diving head first into remote work right now. Top talent know how to manage themselves, they don’t need to be babysat in an office. They flourish in an environment that allows them flexibility and freedom. They make good decisions.

Corporations are currently enforcing a return to office for two reasons - an overinvestment in commercial real estate leading them to fall foul of the sunk cost fallacy, and a misplaced desire to accommodate the lowest common denominator: lower or mid-tier talent that needs more support (which is usually provided by top talent). Top talent doesn’t want to pick up the slack of subpar colleagues, they want to be let loose to perform at their peak. This creates an opportunity for you.

This is an opportunity to take your average business and supercharge it with future leaders who will take your business to the next level. Hiring top talent is an extremely high-leverage task. It makes an enormous difference.

Most people want to live on a beach in Thailand, a ski resort in Canada, or near Big Sur in California. They don’t want to be forced to live in a subpar city, sit in ridiculous traffic, and have supersized cost of living for it.

People care little about fluff benefits like ping pong tables and bean bags. They value good pay, career opportunities, and the ability to work remotely and flexibly (which are not necessarily the same thing!).

Even if, for sake of argument, there is some loss of learning and training among entry level employees, that is such a minor issue relative to the opportunity cost of not hiring the top talent.

Remote work isn’t for everyone or every company. If your work truly needs to be done in person, that is okay. Collaboration may work better in person, but with top talent in place it works perfectly fine remotely. 

In the rare instances that you really do need to come together in person, that can be arranged, the travel cost will have been more than compensated for by the increased performance from the top talent. 

Sometimes the work may even be slightly better in person, remote doesn’t need to be as good if it is close enough as the incremental gain from working in person is outweighed by the step-change earned through better talent. 

There is much more ability to work remotely than people think. Particularly if we assume remote work technology is at the worst it will ever be today. It’s only getting better, more immersive, more transformational.

Hybrid work may also pose a bigger danger than people realise. You can't possibly tell me that there isn't a bias toward promoting someone that is constantly in office and spending time with a leadership vs. a "fully remote" employee. Committing to remote work will help you to make the right promotion decisions, building from a base of better quality talent that the remote opportunities allowed you to attract.

While corporations are trying to force people back to office you should identify the rockstars, the top talent from these corporations, and reach out. You might be surprised how easy it is to poach employees who you thought were out of your league. Now is the time.

A table showing the benefits of remote work for employees and businesses

2. 🧘 The 7 kinds of rest

Most people suck at resting. Not only is taking a break is severely underrated, people are very bad at it. Counterintuitively, taking a break is genuinely one of the most productive things you can do.

A lot of people think that 'switching off' is enough. It's not.

Let me explain this using an analogy. If you overuse your computer, two things happen. It heats up and the battery gets discharged. Now switching the computer off is good to cool it down, but it does nothing for the battery.

A lot of people miss this and so their batteries are becoming flatter and flatter. As a result, they lack enthusiasm, fulfilment and feel tired all the time.

What helps you recharge is personal to you. You cannot just copy somebody else’s routine. For example, I feel rested by playing pc games or taking a moment to breathe and think about nothing or going for a walk, I feel recharged after things like playing badminton. Common ways to recharge include exercise, meditation, eating well, journaling, and spending time in nature.

Sitting in front of the TV might feel like resting but it's not recharging.

This article from Marissa Goldberg really helps highlight the needs for rest, the different types of rest, and how to rest.

A short summary:

1. Physical Rest – Take a midday nap, switch workspaces

2. Mental Rest – Take a midday shower, add in a cleaning block

3. Sensory Rest – Work without a screen, go on a walking meeting

4. Creative Rest – Get out the the house, create an inspiration folder

5. Emotional Rest – Get lunch with a friend, see a therapist

6. Social Rest – Turn meetings into emails, schedule daily “me time”

7. Spiritual Rest – Join a group/club, volunteer in community

There isn’t enough space to get into recharging in more depth, that is a whole topic in itself. Stay tuned for a future issue covering recharging. Implement the above tips to help you better rest. The return on investment for your rest time is huge.

3. 💡 Quote I'm pondering

"Resting is not a reward for success. It’s a prerequisite for performance” - Melody Wilding, Harvard Business Review

Click here to share this quote on Twitter

The quote is from this article on “3 Types of Burnout, and How to Overcome Them”

That's it! I can't wait to hear what you think. What did you find most useful? What do you want more or less of? Reply to this email now and let me know

Also, if you have anything interesting to share, I want to know about it😊

Have a great week,

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