When It Is Time to Say “Good Enough”
Workers often pour their hearts and souls into everything they do. Putting in that extra effort to double-check a document or be sure that the conference room is set up correctly for an important meeting can make an employee a prized asset to the company. Such behavior also can be a source of pride as the worker knows she’s truly given her best.
But working to maintain perfection can be tiring, time-consuming, and inefficient. There are only so many hours in a day, and figuring out the best way to spend them may be a better pursuit than devoting maximum attention to tasks that simply just need to be done.
This does not, of course, mean that one should become lazy or negligent. Nobody would suggest sending out a business letter without spell-checking it or not bothering to confirm a manager’s travel arrangements. But is spending an extra half hour to find a better picture to accompany a report worth the time when the one you’ve already chosen is fine?
Figuring out which responsibilities require 100% and which are less important is often a matter of common sense. A push to land a new client may be a top office priority that demands a great deal of care; deliberating over office-supply vendors among three with similar prices is probably less time-worthy. If in doubt, ask your boss. Knowing his or her chief concerns can help you to prioritize.
Remember, too, that evaluations are made on what you are able to produce. The best document ever created does little good if it arrives too late for the meeting. While you may have the best intentions of getting to everything and doing each job to the absolute best of your ability, be willing to occasionally take the respectable “B+” instead of insisting on going for the “A+” if it means bolstering your productivity and your sanity.