If perfectionism is embedded within your business, it can ultimately create stagnation, lack of growth and it could even cost you your business, what gets you to a certain level in business is often also the thing that is holding you back.
To get past a certain level in business owners and executives need to learn to be ok with letting go and be imperfect. In this piece we will explore the three main ways business owners and managers sabotage their businesses and teams through perfection and explore the measures we ought to take so we can change our beliefs from ones of sabotage to ones of growth and success.
Don’t Let your Business be Your Identity
Yes, it is true that an entrepreneur’s baby is their business, but we ought to give it space to grow, if we try to make everything run perfectly and not allow any mistakes to be made then it will stay within it’s comfort zone and stagnate to the point of decline, one can not quality check and monitor every single detail of the business especially when it becomes larger, thus keeping our standard of excellence and expectations in check is paramount to be able to scale and also let people around us grow through experimentation and trial and error, we often take a huge amount of control that leads to a disconnect between directors, managers and employees. This is because although management can see the bigger picture if there is no room for invention and innovation then the employees will just choose to shut down and do exactly what you tell them with no internal initiative for growth, ideas and innovation that would ultimately serve the business.
So what causes owners to be so controlling over every aspect of their business? What tends to happen with business owners is that they mesh their identity directly to the outcomes of the business they started, especially if it’s their first one.
If the business makes a mistake, then the owner feels like they made a mistake when in reality they are two completely separate entities and if we can separate the two and set up healthy boundaries around perfectionism within our company that will result in more constructive mistakes being made with innovation at the forefront of our culture within the employees and management.
Accept Problems as part of Your Business
How much money one is paid is directly correlated to how difficult the problem is to solve, therefore the best-selling products are ones that can alleviate the most amount of pain, the more pain your product reduces the more valuable the product is.
This is also the case within the structure and setup of a business, if a business lacks problems, it is not a business. There are always issues and troubles as well as problems, but we often categorise anything that is uncomfortable as a problem which is not always the case. This can become dangerous due to the stress it applies to middle management and the employees.
Let’s say a particular way of doing something worked in the past, if you are set in that particular way of operating your employees are less likely to explore a different way of doing the same task that might be more efficient, in this case, it will again lead to poorer company culture and decline in innovation.
Similarly, when providing results for a client one might choose to go the conventional route rather than explore new strategies and tactics to improve and make a positive impact of results, at Mr.Prime we are continuously exploring and staying in touch with the market as well as changes to Amazon as well as the wider economy to be able to offer our clients unique and promising strategies that are bold and reap rewards.
When no problems are solved that results in no growth. For a healthy mental health and company culture it is important to accept the ‘problems’ that are not in our control as conditions of business rather than get frustrated because things are no longer as they used to be, let’s say that Amazon now charges more for FBA, this is now a condition of business, not a problem. Having these healthy boundaries around the things we can and cannot control will improve the company culture from one of frustration to one with a can-do mindset.
Don’t Hide your Mistakes
Being a leader within a team can cause a lot of pressure to build up on our shoulders, it is important to remember that even though we are in a professional, goal-driven environment we still make mistakes. If you hide such mistakes from your team and employees it will only slow down your business and create a culture of mistrust, judgement and create a lack of unity and relatability. Even sharing mistakes and being open about improvements with clients can be a benefit, it creates a trusted, open relationship that is relatable and personal.
Management and C-Suite can often become too formal and superficial about the mistakes they made. Having such a culture within a company only slows things down and ruins employee relations. It removes the relatability, transparency and the drive for innovation and creativity in fear of failure and misjudgements.
There is no such thing as perfect, the fact of the matter is that if you spend more time trying to move the business forward rather than working on perfecting everything you will grow much faster.
Perfect is essentially a standard made up in our mind, one may think a car is perfect but someone else may not be thinking the same, perfection is futile and there is no point chasing it, rather chase innovation, explore new strategies, encourage a culture of openness and transparency within your company and don’t let your emotions and identity be tied to the outcomes of your business, use logic to make decisions rather than the emotional connection to the details.
Learn to categorise problems into controllable and uncontrollable ones for a healthy mind and company culture.
Encourage your team to make aggressive mistakes rather than passive ones and be open about your mistakes.