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You Are Both Wrong
There seem to be two schools of thought in the start-up world and they are in direct conflict with each other.
Move fast and break things vs focus on shipping the best possible version of something.
So which is correct?
In my experience, both are wrong and the magic actually lies in the middle.
Let’s take the move fast approach. While there are definitely pros to this approach, the act of simply shipping is not the goal. Posting daily on Linkedin because that is what a guru recommended will do more to hurt your reputation than help. You run the risk of building a reputation of average - yes you post a lot but most of it isn’t adding a ton of value or well thought out. You see this all the time on Linkedin, but also the same concept applies to shipping campaigns, products anything.
So should you slow down and only ship when you have everything pixel perfect? No.
The reality is that the concept of perfection is a myth. It doesn’t exist in business or anywhere you are trying to get other people to take action. As much as you think you might have nailed a campaign, product feature or Linkedin post, ultimately it is other people who determine the success of any of those things. So the speed at which you can find out out what people liked, disliked, or what made them take action is critical. It is a feedback loop that can make the next iteration of what you are building even stronger.
So don’t wait for perfection and don’t move fast? What the f#%! should we be doing?
The answer is in the middle. Sahil Bloom had a tweet last month that summarized it well.
He calls it the 95-5 Rule:
“In any arena, there are:
(1) A few simple, boring building blocks that will get you 95% of the results.
(2) A long tail of complex, sexy solutions that may get you the last 5% of the results.”
This is how you should approach your Start-up. Once you feel proud of what was built and have confidence that the campaign is mostly there - ship. Don’t waste cycles trying to achieve the additional 5%. It slows down the feedback loop and is wasted energy.
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