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Progress is Better Than Perfection

One of my long time mentors was Brian Tracy and one of his favorite sayings was to “Launch!” Then, I began to hear others talking about failing often to succeed in life. Finally, another entrepreneur friend shared her favorite saying: “Done is Better than Perfect.”

All of these things make “perfect” sense today since speed or a sense of urgency is one of the most important advantages entrepreneurs have over their large competitors. Being able to have no fear of failure and just launch on a project, new product or service offering, hire talented people, or just make a sales call on a specific prospect – are keys to your success.

As a business owner for the past thirty-three years, the ability to move forward without hesitation takes effort. It is not easy to take action without ALL the facts or information you feel you need. However, the results always outpace the inaction taken by the “paralysis by analyst” crowd. Not taking action is somewhat like never purchasing a lottery ticket – you can never win if you refuse to play.

Often we are told to set goals for our companies, which is a great idea when used correctly. First, you need to set a realist goal, set up the actions necessary to achieve them within a specific timeline. Second, you need to execute your action steps to achieve them. Third, you need to review your results at the end of the time period. Determine the variances – are they positive or negative.

Now comes the issue with goal achievement. IF you are a perfectionist and you have missed your goal, there is a strong possibility you will become depressed or even angry at yourself or your team. Why? Because you wanted to hit the goal and you did not hit it.

A better response to missing a goal is to look for progress. Compare the results against the same time period in previous years. Now does it reflect positive growth from previous periods? If it does – you have “Progress” and it should be celebrated.

Unfortunately, most perfectionists do not see the progress and hammer everyone involved as lousy performers. Negativity is the name of this game, so don’t be surprised if you get more of the same type of results.

It is time to change the game. Track progress and celebrate the progress. Then, engage either yourself and/or your team to share ways to close the gap to the target or new target for the next time period. You will be amazed in some cases how well people will respond to this type of positive reinforcement and engagement practices.

Now if you have totally negative results from a progression point of view, it may be time to reflect on your goals and your business. There could be a major flaw in your business model. Change is the only consistent element in being an entrepreneur. Personally, I have changed my business model at least four times during my thirty-three years. It is in most cases, it's the only way to stay in business long term.

Take action on your business model, talk to your customers first and find out exactly what is going on in their minds and markets. Then review how you could change your business model to meet the wants and needs of your targeted customer base.

Risk is the world we live in. Embrace it and learn from every lesson provided by your actions and interactions with customers and prospects. There is no perfect world, so get over it and look for ways to progress into your future business.

If you are interesting in learning more about running a successful business, sign up on my early bird list for an upcoming weekend workshop on how to run your successful usiness. By getting on the early bird list, you will be engaged on what is important to you as the leader of your business.

Just click here to sign up for the early bird list.  

By Voss W Graham, Organizational ArchitectHelping Business Owners to Build a Successful Business Enterprise.

Posted: 6/15/2016 11:40:15 AM | with 0 comments
Filed under: Business, Launch, Owner., Perfection, Progress, Risks, Small

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Your business may be small, but that doesn't mean that your impact can't be huge! The Greater Memphis Chamber's Small Business Council serves to encourage, support, recognize and be a resource to small- and medium-sized businesses in the Memphis area. Here, our talented panel of contributors will present big ideas that could make a huge difference to your small business. And don't be afraid to ask questions ... no matter how small.

Sales & Small Business Ownership
Voss W. Graham is CEO and Senior Business Advisor for InnerActive Consulting Group Inc. He is known by his clients as "a knowledgeable partner who helps our team achieve business growth." He provides practical experience as a small business owner for over 29 years, yet is often engaged with Fortune 500 companies in the development of their people and business strategies.

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