- Effectively differentiates between efforts that require perfection and those for which “good enough” is sufficient.
Still, not everything that we as leaders or our team does has to be perfect. In fact, the urge to always have the optimal solution in every circumstance can almost ensure that we won’t get perfection when we need it. There’s simply too much to do to optimize everything. How do you know, though, when going for the “good enough” solution is the right way to go?
I’ve been talking with my clients about that question and here are some criteria we’ve come up on how to decide between going for the perfect solution or embracing the good enough solution:
- What’s the cost/benefit ratio on going for perfect?
- What’s the scale and potential impact of the issue?
- Is this a life or death situation?
- What additional resources would we need to spend to get from an 80% or 90% solution to a 100% solution?
- What would be the cost of failure?
- If we fail after implementing a “good enough” solution, how would we remediate the failure? Could we remediate it?
- What would a failure mean to our public image and relationships with key stakeholders?
- What’s the impact on our time to market by going for a perfect solution? Could we learn some important lessons from a “fast failure?” Can we live with a fast failure?
What do you think? What’s been your experience with choosing between perfect and good enough? What criteria do you use to decide? What would you add to the list?