We should fully apply ourselves and our resources to completing every task we take on with excellence. If a job is worth doing, it is worth doing right! Other people are always watching us and making judgements about our character. The majority of what they conclude about us comes from the actions they observe. If you want to succeed in life, you should take on every task with this in mind.
The excuses I commonly hear for less than excellent work
As a father and a manager, I try to instill the idea of excellence. However, I have encountered some resistance. It seems that there are usually one of three reasons that we occasionally want to do less than excellent work. Yes, I fall into these traps too.
1. It requires too much effort.
It sometimes seems that the effort required to do the job is just too great. We rationalize that no one will even notice the less than excellent work. We might even think that the job doesn’t warrant the work required. It isn’t really important anyway.
However, doing a less than excellent job will often cause more work in the future. When we slack off, we wind up having to go back and do a job again because what we did the first time didn’t stand the test of time. Shoddy work usually breaks, doesn’t fully convince, or needs further refining to get the job done.
This is really just pure laziness. Low-quality output will make people question your commitment and integrity. This is the fast-track to nowhere.
2. I don’t have the time.
When I’m in a rush, I am tempted to take shortcuts. I ignore the details and try to just power through the task to get it done. So what if it isn’t as good as it could be? At least, it is finished.
We live in a busy world. Everyone is rushing from one thing to the next. No one seems to have the time to slow down and do a job right. We just want to slap this deal together so we can get on to the next thing. This leaves a trail of barely completed tasks in our wake.
Yes, it may take a another few minutes to proof read an e-mail before you send it. It might take another moment to look back over your work to verify it is right. It might even cost you precious seconds to listen carefully to a co-worker.
However, none of this is time wasted. The mistakes it will prevent will save you countless hours of trying to undo a mess that could have been avoided if the job was done right in the first place.
3. I don’t want to spend that much money on this.
It sometimes takes a little more money up front to do a job right. We may need the right tools or better quality equipment or some expertise we don’t have to do the task the way it should be done.
I know it every time when I’m being cheap. There is a difference between frugality and being a cheapskate. I have this little voice in my head telling me to watch out. I used to just ignore it, but over the years I’ve learned to listen. I found that when I was being cheap, it usually ended up costing me more instead of less. I’m still cost conscious, but I’ve learned to listen to that little voice.
It is better to spend what it takes to do a job right than to try to do the job without what is truly needed. This commitment to excellence is worth a few extra dimes. I found that the little extra invested at the beginning pays bigger dividends in the long run.
Commit yourself to a job well done
Reputation is everything. Protect your reputation by completing every job you do with excellence. People will notice!
I remind myself constantly that it is worth the extra effort, time and money to do things right. It prevents rework, reduces stress and adds to my satisfaction. I take pride in knowing I did my best.
A reputation for excellence is well worth the commitment it requires!
What excuses have you heard for performing less than excellent work?
Photo by notsogoodphotography