Perfection is suboptimal

For all the energy that goes into perfecting something, I have found that the overall result is often suboptimal.

Perfection is hard to achieve. It takes a lot of effort, time and resources. When we set out for perfection, we often tend to allocate resources disproportionately. We often run out of time, energy, resource or all of the above┬ábefore we could complete everything to perfection. That leaves us with something that might be perfect in certain aspects and other areas needing attention since we couldn’t get to them. That makes the overall result suboptimal.

We could rather focus on delivering the best as a whole as opposed to perfection in isolation.

One my previous managers used to say, “It is better to have a working Volkswagen car than a Bentley I can’t take out of garage.” No offense either of these cars. I’m just quoting him.

I’ve observed that the suboptimality of the result is directly proportional to amount of perfection we are seeking.

I’m not suggesting that we give up on perfection. But rather that (continued) progress matters more than the initial perfection that we are trying to achieve (and fail in many cases).

Prefer progress over perfection.

We should also inspect the definition of perfection. Everyone has their own. One definition to go by, that could help us, is “perfect enough for the job”. This is similar to “good enough”, but better than good- if that makes sense.