Hard work is preached, but it alone does not lead to success. That's because people tend to play the "effort game" despite an abundance of "thinking games."
An effort game has a well-defined public plan. People then compete for "who can put the most effort?" Examples could be completing all the puzzles in LeetCode, or reading 100 books cover to cover without reason, or something else of that sort.
A thinking game requires you to think up a plan. Since everyone would think of a slightly different plan, the "effort competition" is not that high. You just spend enough effort to execute your plan rather than keeping copycats at bay. Examples would be coming up with a unique marketing strategy that can then be executed easily.
The truth is, as Bertrand Russell said, many don't bother to think.