Hard work is thinking past what you can see and choosing to create what you want to see. Who knows your business better than you? The hard work begins when we're no longer willing to accept a paycheck for delivering the status quo, the expected.
We mistake hard work with long hours and measure it by the time we put in rather than by the results we produce. By results I mean producing those things that are not so obvious like a new process that will save your company time and money. The hard work comes in when you dedicate time into making a better product or developing an idea that will change the course of your business.
If you are someone who sits in front of a big blank white surface and are required to create something out of nothing, you know what hard work is. Hard work is not always obvious.
"Hard work is about risk. Hard work is about training yourself to leap over this barrier, tunnel under that barrier, drive through the other barrier." Seth Godin