This is how “bad” can be the first step to “good”
Knowing when to slack off and ship “bad” work is another skill altogether, because that frees up your energy to do “good” work.
There’s a saying I’ve heard countless times, some variation of, “Don’t Let ‘Perfect’ Be the Enemy of ‘Good.’” (Here’s an example.) I like it, because aiming for perfection is the surest way to a creative block and paralysis by analysis. Aiming for good is a great rallying call to actually get things done — to aim for acceptable and allow perfection to emerge naturally.
It’s a great mantra in the professional realm. The problem still emerges when an ill-defined “Good” becomes some version of the new perfect. Sometimes, a person’s or team’s capabilities just aren’t at the place where they can make something good yet. The relationships, chemistry, and balances in talent aren’t there, and aiming for “Good” at the first swing isn’t even possible yet. “Good” ideas end up being scarce, a “Good” plan is non-existent, and morale ends up really really far away from “Good.”
We probably hope that our expectations of making something “Good” will turn into an actuality, like a self-fulfilling prophecy. That’s not going to happen though. For every group of people who deal with the pressure to meet this unrealistic expectation, there are dozens that struggle. People are fearful because they know they won’t make something “Good” with the time and resources given.
Things may start off “Bad” at the beginning
The natural principle here is not to aim for “Perfect” or “Good,” but always to lower standards at the beginning — even aiming for “Bad,” to start with. Perfect things come from good things, and good things come from bad things. I’m definitely not saying to go all in on a bad idea — however, it’s very possible that a good idea could emerge from putting forward 100 bad ideas. (Rather it’s just unlikely that anyone can make 100 bad ideas without 1 of them being accidentally good.)
Sometimes — and I daresay, a lot of times — “Good” things start out “Bad.” A “Good” feature emerges from a really terrible product. A “Good” opportunity for skill development emerges from a really “Bad” attempt at a…