Can good be the enemy of great? Over the last several months, I've heard multiple people mention to me that sometimes "you have to say NO to the good so that you can say YES to the great." It's really started to sink in lately. The fact is that most of the key decisions that I make as a leader in my family, church, and business require a choice between two good options versus a good option and a bad option.
Let's take the opportunity pipeline at CXO as an example. Over the last 12 months, new searches have been pouring in the door. They're all good opportunities - good people, valuable relationships, authentic needs - and, they keep coming every single week. Each of these good opportunities (as valuable as they might be) come at the cost of my time, energy, and most of all, the opportunity cost for the great opportunities.
What if each and every day you make a conscious decision to say no to opportunities and ideas that are not ideal to make room for the sensational? It seems like every single time I've said no to something recently that something bigger and better arrives. The only way to go from good to great is ruthless pursuit of the great and ruthless denial of the good. Think only of the best, work on the best opportunities, and expect only the best.
Can good be the enemy of great? Steve Jobs sums up this post very well:
"People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I'm actually as proud of the things we haven't done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying "no" to 1,000 things."
Posted: 3/12/2012 7:48:29 PM
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