Curated Leadership for Today's World

Production to Perfection

Posted on 29 March 2010

Albert E.N. Gray wrote in his classic The New Common Denominator of Success, that to be a success you simply have to form the habit of doing things that others don’t like to do.  While decision making is the soil for success, the water that makes the seeds of greatness grow is action. For all my years in the military and sitting under the tutelage of powerful speakers, I still have a deep procrastination streak running through me.

To combat this I have to constantly utilize the Law of Leadership titled Production to Perfection. This law states that if I do something today, while it might have been better had I waited a day, many of the things I did today might not ever have happened. In other words, don’t wait to make a decision, make it and make it yours!

Sometimes we have to make decisions that we know will have strong repercussions. We have to go ahead and make them regardless because we know they are the right thing to do to uphold policies and promote morale. I remember seeing a magnet in a store that read, “It’s not the people you fire that cause you the most grief, it’s the ones you don’t.”  Anyone who has worked alongside or interacted with a toxic employee or dealt with ending their employment knows exactly what this means.

Gen George S Patton said, “There is no perfect time for anything. We will do what has to be done, and we will do it now! Prompt action immediately on a wrong decision may be far better than the right decision made days later.” Inactivity is based on fear and laziness, neither of which has a place in the leader’s arsenal.

Do I act, live and lead like I truly believe I’ve only got a finite time on the earth? Or am I content to let my dislike of activity deny me all the greatness which could be mine?

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