More on Boss Lesson #7

She’ll never be right.

The owner of a company I headed is one of the most stimulating and interesting people you could hope to meet. He’s world famous and highly respected in his craft but shuns the limelight (he much prefers shadow – sorry, ‘in’ joke). He also has high expectations, sometimes unreasonably high. I’m sure this has contributed to his success as a leader internationally in his field. He expects the same from others – not necessarily the same outcome, but the same intent. She’ll be right? Nope. Never.

If you’re going to do something, do it right. Apply thought. Be rigorous. Be curious. Look at it from different angles. Consider alternatives. Ask yourself what does “best” look like in this area – who or what is the gold standard? Aim higher. Are there prerequisites? Consider implications. How else could it be done? What would make it better?

Doing your very best is the best you can do, but ‘good enough’ is rarely the best you can do.

One the face of it, this might seem at odds with the lesson I was taught about not letting perfection get in the way of progress. I think the difference is intent and timing. Not waiting for perfect doesn’t mean going off half-cocked, or doing something halfhearted. Do your best, but at some point you need to act. “Aim for the moon and even if you miss, you’re in the stars”. That’s very different to not pushing the launch button while you decide what to say when you land on the moon.

A lesson learned in excellence.

The rest of my 10 Boss Lessons are here.

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