Working Smarter or Harder?
Both! Depends on your goals!
Fantastic argumentation from VCs and tech entrepreneurs on whether you need to work super hard to achieve success in Silicon Valley. https://www.wired.com/2017/06/silicon-valley-still-doesnt-care-work-life-balance/
Naturally though the correct answer (should I really say IMO?) is both! If you just clock more hours than others — it’s no guarantee you will outperform others; chances are someone is working smarter than you are, and that’s why they are in the lead. Now, once you actually work very smartly, and you compete against smartly working others, and if you want to be first and sacrifice other goodies in life — sure, you should clock more hours, but also expect to burn out — it’s a sprint at this point, not a marathon.
I personally always lean on the “smarter” component; marathon part is more important in the long run (ha!), and as long as you not in the need of money, what’s the point of the short term lead if that pressures you to sacrifice joy from other life’s aspects?
P.S. Fully agree with Weber though — protestant work ethic (work harder and get a better chance for salvation) is a quintessential part of the success of the West. There is a difference between what a miller and what a software engineer do, however.