What I Learnt Today

What I learnt today: Get it out there fast and learn from feedback.

Never wait until it is 100% perfect to post an article or go-live with something. You will never get there. Perfectionism is always a waste of time. Pareto nailed it with the 80:20 rule.

Go live or post quickly, use the initial feedback to then reshape or guide your product to be better. This is way more efficient.

Tim Ferriss basically uses this method with blog posts, launching late at night, getting the initial feedback from countries ahead in terms of time zones (and civilization if you are thinking Europe, not Australia), and then amend the article to be less offensive when the East Coast of the USA wakes up. Pretty effective and efficient really.

And this technique works for almost everything. The sooner you get other people to review or see what you are doing, the quicker you get feedback so will know if you have it right, you are hitting the mark or you need to rework.

And of course the IT industry has finally caught and introduced no end of variants of methods that move products through the design-code-test process quicker and to get customer feedback earlier into the process, methods such as Scrum and Agile.

We used to have an expression when working in Andersen Consulting – “don’t polish a turd”. Because at the end of the day, it’s still a turd. This was often undertaken with presentations, with people painstakingly amending presentations without adding or changing the meaning at all. A complete waste of time. Read through, spell check, have one dry run, then go.

One other interesting thing I learnt today (about myself) was listening to Jocko on his podcast about writing. When writing his book Jocko Extreme Ownership on Amazon he used to set a target of 1000 words per day, allocate a time, turn off all distractions and JFDI. This is exactly what I do, as I now recognise. Waiting until the creative juices are flowing is a way of putting off getting it done. And it also leads to one very important output. It makes your blog natural, as if you are speaking it. Then when people read it, it is more appealing to them and sounds more natural. Errr, so its more enjoyable.

I also use this approach to creating presentations, which was given to me by my good friend Alberto Sanz (who is now a project manager for Lego – how cool is that!). He once said that when he needed to create a presentation he would sit down and create the entire framework and flow of the slides in 20 minutes. If you cannot do it in one setting, without having to undertake research, you don’t know your subject. Seems fair enough and this technique works. You then need to fill in the details and get it ready for release, but then jump back to the start of this post and be careful you don’t start polishing that turd!!!!!

That’s it for today. Would love to get feedback or here your ideas about how to become more efficient and effective.


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