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Lessons learned in 2008 part two: Continuous improvement is better than postponed perfection

Matt Tulloch, General Manager, Dunedin.

What’s the most important thing you personally learned in 2008?

It’s not so much the most important thing learnt in a specific year, but more an important point that I think should be given much more thought: “Continuous Improvement is better than Postponed Perfection”. I know it’s somewhat of a cliché but it’s so true.

We often think: I’ll get around to that. We know something (whether it be a process or a product) that could be tidied up, that greater efficiencies can be gained if we exert a little more effort now into addressing the problem. But too often we say we’ll fix it when we have the capacity; and, of course, capacity is hard to find in a productive office. And so it never happens. We continue to ‘put up with’ or ‘work around’ an issue. So chip away at it – break it down into small achievable tasks.

Furthering this thought, we can even narrow this scope down to those smaller day-to-day things we put off. How many times in both your professional and personal life have you procrastinated about doing something, and then once you finally do it you feel that it wasn’t nearly as bad as you thought it would be? So do it; get it over with. Address those issues and you’ll move forward every day.

And, in light of this, what’s the one thing (if anything) you’ll be doing differently this year?

Each day I write down on a sheet of paper (I know it’s old school but it works!) your five things you want to achieve today. Those five things should be in addition to what your normal work demand is. Do them! So far I have ticked off four from my list today and this blog is number five. nd by the way – it’s working. My productivity is up; items I ‘feared’ are exposed and can be confronted head on. Progress is being made!

Posted by: Katy Sweetman, Marketing Director, Empired Group | 29 January 2009


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