We all want to be the best. No one likes losing, or watching from the sidelines as someone else is victorious in a goal we set out to accomplish. However, sometimes constantly pushing to be the best can come with disastrous consequences for yourself and your employees. Instead of focusing on being perfect, it may be better to focus on what your organization does well and work to improve that in order to improve business.
Stop Trying To Be Perfect
Having high standards is one thing, but when those standards start to lean into perfectionism, you may actually be doing your business more harm than good. Perfectionism can have a negative impact on your employees as well as your business in many ways. Here are a few things perfectionism leads to:
Failure to meet deadlines: If everything always needs to be perfect, and it rarely ever is, then it’s that much harder to be able to meet deadlines because your projects will never actually be done. There will always be one more thing that could be improved. Consistent failure to meet deadlines will eventually start to take a toll on the attitudes of your staff.
Avoiding risks: Sometimes success in business means having to take a few risks. However, quite often perfectionists become too fearful of taking risks because they prefer to stay within their boundaries where they’re confident they can be the best. Without setting high goals to inspire employees, your business may start to stagnate.
Strained relationships: A perfectionist typically demands perfection from all those around them as well as themselves. This can create tension in the office as employees are under an increasing amount of pressure to meet what they may see as impossible standards.
Burnout: Maintaining perfection and always trying to be the best comes with a cost. When constantly seeking perfection, you turn yourself into a workaholic in order to achieve your goals. Your staff will also be working harder, and this could easily lead to burnout for all of you.
Focus on Your Strengths
Instead of putting all your energy into being perfect and becoming number one, refocus some of that energy on what you already do well and build yourself a niche in your market. Ask yourself the following questions to start:
- What is our expertise?
- What products/services do we offer?
- Who is our target audience?
- What does our audience love about us?
- How can we do that better?
Once you’re able to answer these questions, you’ve begun the process of discovering your niche market. Next you’ll want to drill further into your target audience:
- Who are they?
- Where are they?
- What are their buying behaviors?
Once you know your audience, and what they want from you, begin to plan how to meet that need. You don’t need to be the best, or perfect, you just need to be able to give your customers what they want.
Niching Down on the Culture of Convenience
For more on developing your niche, listen to the Culture of Convenience episode 0025, Niche Down: Niches get Riches.