I wonder. Laziness, or sloth, is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, right? It is inherently bad. Lazy people are inactive, unproductive, low-end contributors to any team.
But I wonder. I certainly have my share of lazy tendencies, but I don’t think too many people would describe me as unproductive. (At least not to my face.) But, I treasure my downtime for sure. I love to relax on the couch after a long day, watching Jeopardy, and catching up on Facebook. I would usually rather be “chilling out” than burning the midnight oil on a project for work.
I think it’s just this tendency though, that can drive productivity. If you value your downtime enough, then you start to look for more efficient ways of getting things done. By being efficient “working smarter” not harder, you could be just as productive as the next person, if not more so.
I think history might back me up on this. The wheel wasn’t invented because people enjoyed dragging their food and tools around on the ground. Wheels made transportation easier. Elevators were invented because people got tired of lugging things up fights of stairs. But my guess is that Elisa Otis was a pretty productive guy.
Might sound like an oxymoron, but maybe that’s the key to success after all, just a little bit of laziness to enhance productivity.