On a recent project my company was working with a frozen seafood manufacturer to help them bring a specialty frozen seafood product to market.
A huge component of getting this project done was the packaging; it had to be eye-popping and appealing while protecting the frozen seafood pieces inside. After a number of design sessions with the packaging manufacturer, we received the finished packaging. What was initially exuberance during the design session turned into disappointment when we saw the finished product. Some of the graphics were a bit blurry, a re-sealable zipper wasn't included, and a clear window to view the contents inside was missing. Our emotions went from disappointment to anger as the manufacturer told us it would be a number of weeks before a new delivery of the packaging could be done. If we took this route, a key delivery to a very important customer of ours wouldn't be met. What a pickle.
As leaders, we are constantly faced with deciding which tasks to do and how to apply resources to those tasks. There are rare occasions where stars align and we are able to get everything done exactly the way we want it with the resources given to us. Most of the time, though, we have to decide not only what to do but what not to do. This is where the good-enough leader comes in. Good-enough leaders are able to get more done with the resources given to them because they know that there comes a point where the incremental effort (or what I like to refer to as "polishing the apple") just isn't worth the expense required to achieve the effort. Good-enough leaders are able to define clearly what good-enough means for any task being worked on and are able to get the team to self-check on achieving good-enough. Simply put, good-enough leaders get more done because they know not only when to start, but when to stop.
So let’s talk about why the concept of good-enough is important to leaders. There’s some very basic reasons as to why good-enough matters to you:
Being good enough isn't all that difficult and can be applied to virtually any job. Look to be a good-enough leader by thinking about some of these tips:
Be a good-enough leader. You'll get more done because your team will make better choices on where to spend time and will consciously avoid polishing the apple. Think good-enough; it works.
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