How Good is Good Enough?

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We discover that something we thought was good enough, just wasn’t. We could have done better, tried harder, gone just a little farther. For a thousand reasons we stopped too soon, short of a better result. 

You and I know that if we keep doing what we’ve always done, we will get what we’ve always got. It’s a basic tenet of early age learning, which we often choose to ignore. It’s easier to keep doing what we’ve always done, even if the unsatisfactory outcome is known in advance. It’s a silo we inhabit. 

The faster things change and improve the more important it is to be accurate in the first step. The introduction of Moore’s Law in 1965 was a forewarning to technology, by Gordon Moore of Intel fame, that the number of transistors on a microchip would double every two years thereby increasing semiconductor efficiencies and speed to exponential levels never before imagined. A competitor who might ignore the information would be left in the dust. 

By being content with mediocrity our hopes of success are often short-lived. Cheaper, faster, stronger, better are motivational drivers of the most successful among us. Excellence will bring with it unexpected advantages of new and better insights and discoveries. 

The covid pandemic was a much greater surprise than it should have been. Coronavirus became known in the 1960’s and was a part of the SARS pandemic discoveries in animals that received wide-spread medical attention. Those respiratory viruses advanced at a much greater rate because their seriousness was not accepted by the financial community of taxpayers and politicians in the earlier outset. Call them the “good enough” people if you will. 

There’s an often-stated piece of “entrepreneurial wisdom” that you should start your new business before you are 100% ready because getting to the perfect time to start will take too long, cost too much, and give the competition time to beat you to the marketplace. Perfection may be the target, eventually, but being “good enough” is the goal for the grand opening announcement. There’s a lot of bad advice out there. 

Think of your potential revenue source before you think of the wealth you will gain from selling your product/service. That revenue source is your customer. That revenue source is the reason you’re going into business not to make you rich or independent. The reason to go into business is to cure someone else’s pain, not your own. Sustaining your business over a period of time, or sustainability, requires that you continue to cure your customer’s pain. Your preparation for  starting your business is not “good enough” until you are able to cure this pain from the outset and continue to do so for the foreseeable future. That’s called a revenue stream. 

In preparing your start-up business plan don’t ignore the importance of creating a financial needs assessment by estimating the costs of running your business, including your personal cash flow needs. Once you’ve identified the categories of your financial statement – and there will be many – you will find the extent of revenue needed to get you off on the right foot. Now you must identify the means of reaching this revenue. 

From this point good enough is still only a dim light at the end of that long tunnel. Keep a note near you reading, “What is my prospect’s pain and how will I be able to cure it?” When you can accomplish this you are getting close to Good Enough to start.

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