2020. As you most likely know, in US optical terms, this means perfect vision, the ability to see clearly. And there’s also the expression that hindsight is always 20/20. So how do you go about having a perfect 2020?
It starts by accepting the fact that not everything will be perfect!
One of the things that has always struck me when reading comments from players who joined Manchester United in their peak was that the team would almost never celebrate after a win. It’s not that they took it for granted, quite the contrary. Players like Rio Ferdinand, Roy Keane and Paul Scholes (to pick a random selection) just didn’t feel that they had actually won anything until the season was over, the trophy was in the cupboard and the medal around the neck.
A game, whether won, lost or drawn, was a step towards a bigger goal. It actually didn’t matter whether they had played the perfect game, with every pass being inch perfect or not, but it did matter that they did it at least as well the next time.
This should be your approach to work as well. Know what you want to achieve for the year and then accept that milestones may or may not come to pass exactly as you would like them to.
If you expect everything you do to be perfect the first time, then you are most likely sub-optimising your efforts. If instead you aim to do everything as well as possible, accepting that some will be good and some won’t, then you have the liberty of looking at the bigger picture. That gives you the liberty to test and learn. Because if you’re only doing things you can already do perfectly, then you’re not doing new things!
When you set up marketing campaigns (just to give this post a semblance of relevance…), you should not only be thinking “what worked well last time?” but also “what could I do better and differently?” Some times that risk will pay of handsomely, other times it might fail, but then you will know.
In the end, you might not even become champion, but the important thing is you have learned, you have improved and you might even have grown your business. All through imperfection.
Oh, and song of the year? It’d have to be Danny Nedelko by IDLES. Not just because the message is so important, but also because it’s actually from 2018, so it seems an appropriate way to round off a post on imperfection. But do check out their newer stuff too.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.