Drive For Perfection

Too often I see companies working hard with no tangible result. There’s no substitute for brilliance, that technical genius (or six!) who can solve any software problem and come up with a great solution in seemingly no time at all.

But geniuses are hard to find. If you’re the technical genius AND the guy trying to build the company or product, you’re overworked and hard-pressed to get it all done.

What’s the alternative?

The drive for perfection, the drive for excellence. That drive starts at the top, becomes infectious and spreads throughout the team.

Don’t mistake this for the over-doing of engineering, where an engineer or developer works to get the perfect code for the sake of perfection and never gets a product out the door.

Rather, that drive to make a product that is excellent from the viewpoint of the user experience.

Couple that with a deadline to avoid the constant and endless “improvement,” and that drive to create a great product and get it to market will overcome the lack of genius. Because that drive results in you or your team becoming a genius. Figuring out how to make something work, simply, elegantly, drives you to become better.

Genius has many qualities. One of those, and perhaps the most under-looked, is hard work.

I am a fan of racing. There are a couple of adages that come to mind. “To finish first, you must first finish.” Having the fastest car on the track doesn’t do you a dang bit of good if it blows up five laps into a fifty lap race, or on the forty-ninth lap. You’ve got to finish to be able to finish first.

In the business world, this means delivering product.

The second adage is, “Winners never quit.” If you do a case study of the top racing or sports teams or athletes, for that matter, you’ll find that hard work, drive, dedication to detail, knowing your business and doing it, never giving up, these are the common denominators of every winning team. Budget helps, but budget by itself won’t get you there.

History is loaded with small, start-up companies that took on the status quo and broke through barriers of every type to be successful.

On the other hand, delivering mediocre products that take a long time aren’t going to take the market by storm. It’s almost as if the intensity and fervor in creating the product translates into the market penetration of a product. Modest dedication, modest product releases, modest product acceptance.

Sure, you’ll find some people and companies who didn’t do anything special and got lucky—but getting lucky is not a great formula for success. Drive, dedication, never quitting, these are the hallmarks of success.

Behind the drive for perfection there needs to be passion. Are you going to work through the night, around the clock, skip the grand opening of Star Wars or Star Trek, to get your product out the door? Will you do “Whatever it Takes” (quoting from Grant Cardone)?

It takes that Drive for Perfection to make it. This fact cannot be understated. If you want your product to go viral, underlying all of the points covered (great product, great Marketing & PR, great support) is the Drive for Perfection.

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