Sunbathing and a Cigar © by Mike Schinkel (2003)

Laziness is the bane of productivity. At least, that’s what we’re always told. What if I told you that working less — or being somewhat averse to “getting your hands dirty” — has more benefits than drawbacks?

This is similar to what many popular business strategies already advise, like The 4-Hour Workweek or The E-Myth. These books say that some laziness is good for business, and I agree! Because one can still be proactive but have a “lazy” mentality.

That being said, here are 7 great benefits to being a “lazy” entrepreneur:

  1. You’ll cut deals and delegate to get things done. If you’re working less, you’ll become more focused on cutting mutually beneficial deals with others in order to get stuff done. This frees up more of your time while also offering opportunity for others to earn a living by applying their talents. For example, in the case of a Web design firm, a “lazy” entrepreneur might sign up for a Web tool like Basecamp and then hire and invite designers to collaborate on client projects within it.
  2. You’ll work “on” rather than “in” the business. If you’re applying your laziness in the right way (trying to stay away from “too much” physical or mental exertion), you’ll have free time to work on building business systems that allow the business to run and grow without your constant guiding hand.
  3. You’ll sleep more. The benefits of this pays enormous dividends in terms of both personal happiness and productivity.
  4. You’ll have more time for leisure and exercise. Taking breaks from work to expose yourself to fun side activities can help to inspire a wealth of new ideas and positive energy, which can be redirected back into building the business.
  5. You’ll focus more on the numbers. By being “lazy” and having others perform the day-to-day tasks needed to run the business, you are able to make decisions free of emotion and based on what the business needs in order to grow. In addition, when you take emotion out of business, you become more focused on that which yields results — numbers. Ideas and creativity drive a business’ growth, but numbers provide an unbiased perspective on which ideas are right to drive that growth.
  6. You’ll have more time to read. You’ll have more time to study how other entrepreneurs have succeeded in the past, and you can also stay up-to-date with more current success stories online.
  7. You’ll be happier, and so will your employees. Everyone wins when you’re lazy! In general, you’ll be happier and more positive overall. This will rub off on your employees and help to motivate them to also feel good about their work. In the long run, this makes for a better company culture.

What are some of the drawbacks to being a “lazy” entrepreneur?

Matthew Ackerson is the founder of PetoVera, created to solve the universal problem of perfecting the process of making ideas real. He and the businesses he helped to start have been featured in Popular Science,, Reuters, TechCrunch, and more. As a student, Matthew started three businesses — one of which won Cornell University’s Big Idea Business Competition.

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC leads #FixYoungAmerica, a solutions-based movement that aims to end youth unemployment and put young Americans back to work.