I vividly remember the first time I heard the phrase, “Work Smarter. Not Harder.” It was an extremely hot summer day on the obstacle course at Ft. Knox, Kentucky. There was sweat pouring from my body as I bent over with my hands on my knees along with the other members of my squad. A drill sergeant walking amongst us screaming and gesturing for us to get our butts in gear. That’s the nice way to put it. (Now stick with me; let’s get into how my team defeated failure.)

We had gotten bogged down at one of the obstacles on the course. One member of our team was really struggling and we weren’t just going to leave him behind. I bet we had tried to get passed this obstacle a half-dozen times but kept failing to get this guy over. The old crusty sarge who had likely seen this same scenario play out many times over the years told us to calm down, breath, and work the issue. That’s when he said, “Work smarter boys, not harder.”

As if magic was cast upon us, we stopped banging our heads against the wall and thought about things. Talking with each other we managed to come up with a plan using our past failures and a conglomerate of ideas. Armed with a renewed sense of purpose, we attacked and defeated that obstacle. Now that’s a lot more glamorous that probably what it looked like to that drill sergeant, but those moments became my foundation to always try to work smarter, not harder.

Connecting this story to what I do today, polling is a key service I help folks with so that they can work smarter. Making informed decision using accurately-gathered data is one of the smartest things an organization can do.

Most of us in our industry are trying to reach someone specifically to get them to do something specific – vote. Outside of being able to reach everyone in your target audience on the phone or at their door, the next best thing is a well-executed poll followed by accurate quantitative analysis.

It blows my mind to see people make huge, important decisions without good information. The impact is misuse of valuable resources and likely a financial cost as well. Coming from the reconnaissance world, I think of it as a commander who puts troops in harm’s way with no regard for the intelligence situation on the battlefield. Who would do that?

If you want to make smarter decisions, I want to help you. Even if it’s only to discuss the myriad of ways research and polling will help you accomplish your goals and maximize your resources, let’s find time to talk.

Want to discuss more? Ping me anytime. Find me here.