Perfectionism is a killer. I heard this statement not so long ago as part of a training course. It made me think. Even worse, it gave me flashbacks of Me being very much like that in a not-so-distant-past. Losing my Self in wanting everything done perfectly and in this drive losing sight of the Big Picture. For that is really what it is: being out of touch with reality, for in reality, in Life, everything needs its imperfections.
Wanting to be the “perfect sales” is even somewhat revolting for many customers, for you loose the Human Touch. “Far too slick” is one comment I received long ago… and the effect of that is that you loose trust. Customers will only buy from you when they know you, like you and trust you. Specifically the like and trust factors score higher with your customers when you are ok with your imperfections. For then you radiate that you are Human. And customers like that.
Even the jewelry industry knows about this paradigm: technology has advanced so much these days, that they can create perfect diamonds. The setback was: they don’t sell…. nobody was interested in these “perfect” stones, for they were “too perfect“. So the geniuses they were, they adapted the manufacturing process to add tiny imperfections to those diamonds, so they would be perfect.
These diamonds became the Perfect Imperfections. And became instantly popular. Or how we Humans love imperfections. Would it really be a coincidence that Men’s Health magazine in the US found that “perfect” looking women actually scare off most men when it comes down to wanting a long term lasting relationship? I don’t think so.
Applying this to business is very easy. Everyone who’s been into project management (for example of IT projects) knows that 80% of the functionality can be created with 20% of the project effort. Take this further and you know very quickly that the last 5 or 10% of the customers’ wish list stretches the budget and efforts so far, it’s not only far from being economical, it’ll probably be the first and foremost ROI killer.
Going for “good enough” is the very best first step. It sure doesn’t have to be the last step. Obviously not. For life is change, so an ever continuing cycle of improvement is highly advisable.
Good Enough is another way of accepting our Human Nature. Being very much in balance with that opens up a space for your customers (or colleagues) to build confidence. To trust you. And trust is what you want, for it increases revenues, margins, loyalty.
“Good Enough” is the Perfect Imperfection.