We all want to give our best, sometimes even going the extra mile.
But what if you had to choose between perfection or accomplishing things? Which would you choose?
We’ve gathered 10 reasons why done is better than perfect.
See them below.
Business Coach | Mentor
I see this a lot amongst my clients – women who are starting a business for the first time. They want to put out something that is 100% perfect, but that only holds them back and leaves them feeling anxious.
It’s near impossible to ever do something perfectly, so it’s better to focus on getting something that is 80% right and then go for it.
There are several downsides to waiting:
- you can’t make money from products and services you haven’t launched
- the longer you wait, the more likely it is that someone else will launch a similar product ahead of you, and
- you deny your clients of your unique value.
There is also a big advantage to putting something out that isn’t perfect – you get to improve it with the feedback from your clients.
The reality is that you could invest lots of time, money and resources into creating something you feel is perfect, only to find out that it’s not quite what the client wanted.
However, if you put something out that is almost perfect, you can then made small tweaks and adjustments once you get feedback on what really works for your clients, and make your next ’new improved’ version exceptional!
It’s helpful to remember products like the iPhone, which have been very successfully launched even though the first versions were full of bugs and errors. As the saying goes ‘You don’t have to be great to get started, but you have to get started to be great!’.
CEO and Co-founder, Mettl
When you start with a perfectionist mindset, in no time, you start overthinking about what if the task doesn’t come out as expected.
Or, what if I pour countless hours in a task that is bound to provide mediocre results? And from overthinking stems procrastination that leaves you nowhere with a task. I call it the “POP Syndrome: Perfection, Overthinking, and Procrastination.”
You get overly comfortable with the idea of producing shiny work; but unfortunately, you can never gather the courage to start at all.
Therefore, there has to be a starting point; even if you are chasing the idea of perfection. Give yourself the privilege to improve your work with a couple of revisions or more.
Or else, the fear of producing shallow work will only inject anxiety in your mind and cause panic for work that hasn’t even started yet. Therefore, you must reassure yourself that you can’t figure out all in your mind in the first go.
CEO | Head Coach, Luxi Coach
Done is so much better than perfect because perfection is subjective.
Yes, even your ideal, your standard, your loftiest prettiest #lifegoals aren’t enough for someone else. Imagine that. Actually, don’t.
Let go of perfect because perfect is a trap. Perfect promotes inaction because “it’s not ready” or “I’m not ready”.
Perfection is a sophisticated form of procrastination and the antithesis of collaboration.
“I’ll wait until…” is a way to sit on the sidelines and minimize risk. It’s a way to stay in our head where we can control all outcomes.
Done, on the other hand, is done! It’s liberating, motivating, and accomplished. Cross it off the list and move on.
Declare your readiness for more. The only way to move forward is to do something, to start where you are, with what you have, to put it out there, risk being seen for who you are, at the stage you are.
Let others fall in love with you now. Let them grow with you. Let them see your evolution and celebrate your journey. If you aren’t doing anything, sharing anything, there’s nothing to relate to. Reveal yourself.
Perfection is seductive, absolutely, but also limiting. If you can let it go, you just may find that messiness, unpredictability, progress is just as delicious.
Owner, Sell My San Antonio House
We have all been guilty of it, continuing to change, tweak, or think we could make it a little bit better.
Maybe it’s because we are afraid of what other people will think of our work or we think that if this project, article, or proposal isn’t perfect that it’s going to be detrimental to my business.
And while some of that might be true, the other side of the coin is that if you never finish you will be known as the person who did nothing, or your customer will never even have the chance to say “yes or no”.
Yes, do the best you can from the start…but then call it done and get it out there. If you remain open to it, you will probably receive some great feedback that you can use to modify the original project or, at worst, you can use that feedback in your next project so that it will be even better.
We must continue to move forward in our business and our lives even when we are not 100% sure. Don’t let trying to make something perfect stop you from ever having a chance.
Business Consultant | Remote COO
As the saying goes “Money loves speed” and in spite the fact that it sounds like a cliche it has a lot of wisdom.
Essentially there are two components that trump “perfect”:
- Perfection is not an objective measurement; rather in the eye of the beholder. So even if one thinks that they have achieved perfection; it may not be perceived the same way by others.
- Striving for perfection is inherently a process that can and should occur over time. Additionally, it requires feedback that can’t be given unless the product or service is offered to users. Hence, it has to be “done” before it can get to whatever the definition of “perfection” is.
Ultimately, there has to be a balance between getting things done and getting it done perfectly. Such balance is inherently a better compromise.
Founder | CEO, Darien Wellness
Perfectionists are a lot of sizzle and a tad bit of steak.
Perfectionism is an interesting defense, a special sort of shield for anxious people. It is rarely criticized and in less informed circles, even valued. “I just want it to be perfect” is perceived to a statement about quality and care.
But more often it is an excuse, a reason to delay, and delay, and delay a little more.
There is so much fear and insecurity around releasing a finished product–painting, book report, rundown for the CEO–that it just needs “a little more time” to get it right.
So the less-than-perfect, but delivered, item far exceeds the promises and excuses that keep perfectionists from producing little or nothing in their work.
Realtor/Team Lead, The RealDeal Arizona Team of North&Co.
Is anything ever really perfect? A project may be complete but it is just one building block in the construction of our lives.
Meant to evolve, striving for perfection is a lifelong journey that frankly, isn’t human.
No matter what it is you’re putting out into the world, the creative process is an organic one and will constantly change over time. What may have been perfect yesterday, will not be perfect tomorrow.
Perfection is a perception and a subjective one at that.
Publish the book, post the video, submit the article, whatever it is and then build upon it. Give it a starting and ending place to carry out the creative journey in a manageable way, being able to see the progress and feel good about how far you’ve come.
Business Consultant, Piedmont Avenue Consulting Inc.
As a business owner or startup founder, especially when starting, you want it to be perfect.
You have your idea and nothing can take it down, however, to get to that idea it is taking you forever and therefore, you still have nothing on the market.
The perfect example is website building. Building a website can take forever because you need the right pictures, the right content etc.
The issue is that the entire time your website is not live you are missing out and losing potential clients. Just make it live! If you have the basic pages, even one page that say “We are X and we do Y” is better than nothing at all.
Same idea for a product. You need customers review, you need to know how they feel about your product and most importantly what they really want to see in it. You don’t need perfection, you need it done.
Licensed Life and Health Agent | Co-Founder, Simply Insurance
I have learned through the years that you can always be done, but never perfect.
When I first started my agency years ago it was far from perfect, I didn’t know anything, I was fighting for the best contracts and trying to hire people and I hadn’t made 1 sale myself.
I learned the hard way that I was so busy trying to make it perfect that I didn’t get the most important part completed first. Learning the business.
Once I got licensed and appointed with insurance companies and found a few lead vendors I was done. However, in my quest to be perfect I lost all of my initial agents and had to rebuild from scratch.
When it comes to my online agency, I have learned that my site isn’t perfect, but it is done and that you can’t waste valuable time trying to make something perfect before you take action.
Starting is the most important thing you can do, just put it out there and fix the things that are important but don’t obsess over perfection because it can ruin a great business.
Founding Coach and Consultant, 4Good Consulting
Not to get too meta about perfection, but unless we spend significant hours calibrating around “perfect” with those for whom we are producing work, “perfect” falls somewhere between elusive and totally not the point.
Create the best product possible with the information provided and deliver with curiosity.
This means added efficiency for the organization and a better fit product or service. Ultimately “perfect” means a product or service is a match to the needs of those for whom it is designed. The only way to ensure that is to ask.
Do done. Then ask your way to perfect.
Personal Finance Blogger, Vital Dollar
Done is better than perfect because perfection rarely exists.
Feeling the need to have everything perfect will prevent you from completing things, slow you down, and make you afraid of other people’s opinions. Also, what may seem perfect today may not seem perfect tomorrow, or sometime down the road.
If you feel the need for perfection you may wind up constantly going back and fixing things that you thought were already done (and are already good enough).
In most cases, you can spend a lot of time trying to get from “very good” to “perfect”. The difference may not be that significant, but you may waste a lot of time making just that small, insignificant improvement.