You’ve Been Sold a Lie About Hard Work. Here’s the Reality with Dr. Morten Hansen

08.29.2019 - By The Science of Success

Download our free app to listen on your phone

In this episode we discuss what creates great performance at work. Uncover how you can do better work in fewer hours. Get rid of wasted meetings with hacks you can use to make your meetings radically more productive, finally remove the things that are distracting you, learn the recipe you need to say no to your boss the right way, and focus on the biggest things that will create the most value in your work. We share all of these lessons and much more with our guest Dr. Morten Hansen.
Dr. Morten Hansen is a management professor at the UC, Berkeley and a faculty member at Apple University. His academic research has won several prestigious awards and he is ranked as one of the world’s most influential management thinkers by Thinkers50. He was also a manager at the Boston Consulting Group, where he advised corporate clients worldwide. He is the author of the best sellingGreat at Work, Great by Choice, and Collaboration.Study of 5000 people, how they work, and their performance. The biggest conclusion… most people work the WRONG way. Most people think working MORE is better. The VERY TOP PERFORMERS across PROFESSIONS and INDUSTRIES and AGE GROUPS tend to be those who are really really good at picking the most important priorities, engaging extreme focus, and going all-in on the few things that matter the most. Productivity is going down in today’s world, it’s not going up. You have to work hard, but after about 50 hours of work, there are massively diminished returns, and a sharp spike in marginal productivity, beyond 65 hrs per week you start performing less well than someone working 40 hours per week. It’s not about cramming more hours into your week, it’s about focusing those hours on the RIGHT THINGS and prioritizing appropriately. Evidence-based insights into what it means to be a top performer at work. “What creates great performance at work?"Focus is often misunderstood. “Do less, then obsess."Focus in the workplace means FEWER TASKS and FEWER PRIORITIES. Many people are not good at saying no“One of the greatest professional skills required to be successful today is the ability to say no."If you don’t say no, then you start doing mediocre work. What do you do when your boss fires back “all your projects are important?"How do you think about focus in the context of “portfolio” opportunities? (Investors, real estate agents, and so forth). If the execution of each one of those things depends on YOUR effort, then you should be FOCUSING on that. Whether or not it hinges on your specific effort, that is the key question. Whenever the execution is reliant on you, you have to FOCUS DEEPLY and execute. What’s the difference between passion and purpose?People who have more passion and purpose don’t work more hours, but they get more out of EACH hour they work. How do you find passion and purpose in your work every day?KEY TACTIC: What are the 3 most valuable things I can do at my job?Most people spend less than 40% of their time on their top 3 priorities. How do you change and remove things from your calendar that are distracting you?Routine busywork prevents you from taking the time to actually implement these kinds of contemplative routines.Are you tired of wasting your time daily in ineffective meetings?Hacks for radically improving the productivity of your meetings:Homework: Do Less, then Obsess. Review your calendar for the next 2 weeks and cut out one or two things. Say no to something or don’t accept the invitation. Free up your time and then dedicate it on the most important thing you need to get done. 

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

More episodes from The Science of Success