Finish strong, Big Red? [I like calling you Big Red rather than Big Red Car, seems so much more familiar and folksy, no?]
Big Red Car here on the strength of a trip to NYC to conduct recon on the comings and goings of our nation’s first capital. You did know that, right? NYC was our first capital.
So, The Boss is talking to several CEOs — brilliant persons all — and I (eavesdropper that I am) overhear a common lament: CEOs are struggling to find the finish line in the development of their products. This happens across the board whether it is a bit of software alchemy or a website or a product. Or, even, an organizational development, like hiring some more salespersons.
You have to force a finish line and you have to finish strong.
Big Red Car, can you ‘splain that, please?
OK, dear reader, here it is. You’re working on something and you’re mumbling about MVP (minimum viable product), or alpha version, or beta version — and you keep adding features to the product and you keep failing to launch or ship or to take action. You keep moving the finish line and you fail to finish strong.
Maybe, you keep adding features or you want to perfect something (making good the enemy of perfect, you know better than that).
Ever had that happen to you?
It is a matter of simple discipline. Draw the finish line. Finish the product. Ship the product. Launch the product. Make the change. Do it (catchy phrase, someone should get their arms around that one).
But, but, but, Big Red Car, finish strong?
No buts, brilliant CEO.
Remember, you are making a Version 1.0 which will be developed into a Version 1.1 and then 1.2 — you see where this is going right?
Then, when you get to Version 1.5, the modifications are so great, you launch Version 2.0 and the process starts all over again.
This is the Chinese Menu management approach to developing anything. Modify, modify, modify, re-launch, modify — got it?
[One other thought: make the transition between 1.0 and 2.0 have revenue implications. That has a great way of bringing things into focus. It helps with the definition of things. Revenue. Y’all are doing this stuff to make money, right?]
But, Big Red Car, finish strong?
No, buts. Draw that line. Ship or launch and save that great development for the next version. Don’t disregard it. Put it in as the future Version 2.3 and drive on.
Most of the success attained in the world is accomplished by people who are 80% right but done on time.
If this shoe fits you, wear it. Finish strong.
But, hey, what the Hell do I really know anyway? I’m just a Big Red Car. Happy Thanksgiving! Be good to yourself, gorge on turkey, and now that you’re getting better and smarter every day. I can tell and the Big Red Car doesn’t miss spit.