7 Ways Perfection is Killing Your Business – or Is It 6?

Problems with Perfection: 7 Ways Perfection is Killing Your Business

Can we ever truly be perfect, in anything?  Possibly, but that perfection is often short-lived.  As a society, we are always seeking ‘perfection’, and as such, we are often quick to label something as perfect, even when it is not.  A perfect stranger, a perfect storm, a perfect match or a perfect crime perhaps.

But if striving for perfection is part of your business personality, it could be damaging your ability to reach the point of product or solution launch; therefore your problems with perfection could be harming your ability to innovate.

Heck, when I launched most of my blogs or businesses, they were a mess, but they got out there and generated the buzz and citations needed to succeed. SEJ, which after three years became a six figure blog, had a disastrous template design upon launch, but I needed to get it out there at the right time, and then be flexible and nimble enough to make changes. Now, it’s a leading influencer in the world of digital marketing.

If you are running your business trying to adhere to this impossible standard, then you may be in trouble.

Here are seven problems with perfection that are killing your business.

Beware these Problems with Perfection

Makes You Slow to Market

In marketing strategy, there is an advantage known as FMA or first-mover advantage, where the first to market often gains a great initial advantage over competitors. Recent literature has suggested that that first-movers may be at a disadvantage, failing around 47 percent of the time, with ‘fast-followers’ (8 percent failure rate) being the real market winners because they can improve on newly launched products or services and reduce cost and inefficiencies.

No matter if you are first to market, or join slightly after, being one of the first is crucial to business success.  Unless you do something significantly different than any major competitor, and these are few and far between, then you must launch products or services effectively and efficiently.

Perfectionists often obsess over every minute detail, often delaying products and/or launches, which ultimately cause decreases in success metrics.

Founder of Linkedin, Reid Hoffman, said “If you are not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.”

Obviously, your products and strategies should be well vetted and tested, but lack of speed kills.  Accept that perfection is unobtainable and set realistic launch goals.  Pick a small group of trusted associates or customers to test new products, and provide feedback.  You can always make adjustments and improvements along the way.  Remember the first cars weren’t even sold with windshield wipers because no one ever thought people would take them out in the rain.  As your customers inform you what changes or improvements need to be made, you can address them. Proving your use and delivering on your promises are more important to customers than perfection.

Robs Your Project of its Dynamism

Sometimes, trying to make something perfect can remove the energy and desire.  Think about the best presentation you have ever seen, or maybe just one with 28 million views.

You can practice a presentation 100 times, and still not be prepared for a question, or something that happens in that room, up at that table or podium.  So why stress over it?  Giving a presentation is as much about presenting yourself as it is content or facts.

People want to see someone they can relate to, and as it is often said, no one is perfect.  You should always properly prepare for a presentation, but don’t sit in the back of the room tinkering for perfection, walk around and introduce yourself.  Start a few conversations to see if you can find some interesting details to include in your presentation.

Show your audience that you are aware of them, that you can relate to them, and that you are just like them, a normal non-perfect individual that has something extremely important to convey to them.  That will go much further than an extra bullet point on a screen full of text that no one will read.

Keeps You Waiting for that Perfect Opportunity

Are you the kind of person that is always looking for the perfect opportunity?  You’ve probably noticed a running theme by now, but no opportunity is perfect.  It is generally more a matter of pros and cons.  If you gain more pros by engaging in a new opportunity, you should generally go for it.  Always be on the lookout for new opportunities for your business.  Come up with a uniform system of evaluating each one.

Select the ones that make the most sense, and tackle any hurdles as they come along.  Not every opportunity is going to work out, but some of them will, and when you look back you’ll see how imperfect the situation was at the beginning and the steps you took to improve it.

This strategy will also help you evolve as a business person as you learn what works and what doesn’t.  As Wayne Gretzky said, “you miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.”

Sabotages Confidence and Self-Belief

One of the most encompassing deficiencies of perfection is that it can sabotage confidence and self-belief.  If you are afraid to launch a product or service, or pitch a new strategy until you think it is perfect, and then when you do, it is criticized, it can be crushing.  I’m sure you’ve probably been on social media lately, and if so, you know that someone has a comment for everything.  If you own or run a business, commenting is what you hire people to do, and if you are an employee, it is what you get paid for.  However, if you think something is perfect, and are told it is not, it can ruin your confidence, and this can stifle productivity.

Remember, innovations are built by teams, and no success has been free from criticism.  Use it to constantly improve.  Perfection can be something that is striven for, but rarely obtained.  Don’t dwell on criticism, use it to refine and enhance.

Prevets Your Getting From Start to Finish

In many phases of business, things are constantly evolving and never actually finished.  Think about a business plan, or target customers.  You should always be updating plans and trying to obtain new customers, but it is important to set milestones and plans that can actually be finished.  It will give you a sense of accomplishment and vigor and inspire your next cycle of innovation.

Perfectionists are often cited as not being able to finish anything because there is always something that can be changed to try and reach that unobtainable level of perfection.  Think about how this article started. Speed is an asset that perfection doesn’t allow.

Your milestones should be realistic times or events that allow you to move to the next step.  Be sure to evaluate and address areas for improvement in each subsequent step, as you try to achieve a more perfect outcome.

Destroys Vital Conditions for Creativity

Creativity and curiosity are born from chaos.  Always trying to be perfect eliminates your inclination to take risks and innovate.  You need to be creative to thrive in business.  There was a time when people said selling books online was crazy because users were scared to use credit cards on the web, the shipping costs would eat up any money that was saved and people would have to wait a week for a book that they could have today at any store or public library.

You probably already know where this is going, but today Amazon is rated as the tenth most profitable brand in the world.  They certainly had their growing pains, but used feedback from mistakes to grow into the behemoth they are today.

Don’t be afraid to embrace chaos.  Again, striving for perfection can certainly be a goal, but it is often created from bedlam.  Make sure you get uncomfortable from time to time; it can help you create something you can’t yet fathom, but could fundamentally improve your business.

Nothing’s Perfect

Especially this posting.  The title stated you were going to get 7 ways perfection is killing your business, but there were only 6.  I just wanted to leave some room for improvement, as you should too, because nothing is perfect, or more perfect.

Strive for consistency, not perfection and your business will thrive no matter the environment, product or competitor.

Have some more ways that perfection could be killing your business? Please feel free to leave them in the comments below.


What You Can Learn from One Fictional Movie Character – and Two Real Life Entrepreneurs

Image result for What You Can Learn from One Fictional Movie Character – and Two Real Life Entrepreneurs

Despite all odds, Rocky Balboa believed in himself.

The fictional fighter in the Rocky movie series from the Philadelphia slums could have felt sorry for himself, given up and blamed others.

Did he? NO! As he says in Rocky III:

“Nobody owes nobody nothin’. You owe yourself.”

In other words, don’t think of all the things that can go wrong and then feel defeated because a problem arises. You owe it to yourself to give it your best … and make a grab for greatness.

Yet it’s hard to feel that way on days when it seems like everything that can go wrong, does.

I know. Sometimes as an entrepreneur it can feel like your dream is impossible.

Don’t give up!

It’s Not Just Movie Characters Who Achieve Against All Odds

While a multitude of quotes from the Rocky movies have inspired entrepreneurs, you don’t have to look to the movies for motivation.

Consider Mark Zuckerberg. A little more than a decade ago, he was a college student. He didn’t even graduate from college. Today, as co-founder of Facebook, he is the sixth richest person in the world on the Forbes 2016 billionaire list.

Rising from college student to CEO, Zuckerberg created a site that reaches over 1 billion daily active users — that’s nearly 15 percent of the world’s population!

Sounds impossible doesn’t it?

Or there’s Richard Branson, the iconic entrepreneur. He started with nothing and then built his own airline, Virgin Atlantic. He wasn’t from the airline industry. It wasn’t like he had a lot of money at the time, either. But somehow he started his own airline.

And today, he’s one of the handful of pioneers of private space flight with his company, Virgin Galactic.

Think about that a moment. Who starts their own space travel company? What could be more impossible than that?

Granted, those two people are unique. Few of us are going to become billionaires.

Get Motivated by People Who Reached for the Stars

So instead, draw inspiration from what they overcame to achieve a seemingly impossible thing. Being a billionaire is not the definition of success. No one is suggesting that just because you fall short of Zuckerberg’s net worth you can’t be successful.

Think about what it must have been like in the early days for Zuckerberg and Branson. Surely many things went wrong. Some people doubted them. They probably had trouble getting some of their calls returned. They likely worried about where they’d get the money to build their companies (even as they showed a confident face to the world). But somehow they kept on, driven by their dreams.

Whatever you are dreaming of in business, go for it.

Dream no small dreams. Don’t fixate on all the odds against you. Reach for the stars.

Image Credits: Lanterns, Construction, Skateboard, Rocky, Hands, Hang Glider.  Richard Branson, Virgin Galactic. Rockets. Zuckerberg,Nasdaq via Wikipedia.


Pinterest Brings Buyable Pins to the Web – Finally

Pinterest Buy Button Comes to the Web - Finally

Pinterest is finally introducing Buyable Pins to the web version of its site — and a new shopping bag is being rolled out too.

Last year, Pinterest introduced “Buyable Pins” on mobile and later integrated them into eCommerce platforms such as Bigcommerce, eBay-owned Magento and IBM Commerce. Now, the social network is finally announcing that the Pinterest buy button that was first launched on the app is going to be available on the web. And the “new shopping bag” will allow users to shop for multiple items on the site from wherever they are.

The shopping bag is basically a modern implementation of a shopping cart, which should ideally see merchants increase their sales as it encourages people to buy more items.  The company has also introduced a new shopping section on Pinterest Shop, with sections for top shops from vendors.

Expanding the Usefulness of the Pinterest Buy Button

It seems almost like an afterthought for Pinterest to add Buyable Pins to the web version of the site. However, the feature now allows viewers to see other products from the specific vendor. For instance, if one is viewing a Channel bag, below it they will be able to see a few other bags from the same seller. This allows merchants to advertise and even sell a few more products from their collection.

Small business owners already harnessing the power of Pinterest as a sales and marketing tool will also be delighted to note that the social networking site has introduced an enhancement to its visual search capability. Pinterest’s iOS app users can now find an item they want by simply tapping the camera button, taking a picture and searching for the item on the app. This ideally means that users will have an easier time finding a product and sellers will also increase their sales.

Buyers can also easily look for a brand that interests them.

“If you’re looking for something from a brand you love, head over to their profile and tap the new filtering options to find popular products, sale items and shipping deals,” Pinterest’s Product Manager Tim Weingarten said in a post on the official Pinterest blog.

As of yet, Buyable Pins are only available to a select number of Pinterest users and you must have aPinterest business account in order to be considered. However, the number of merchants able to use the pins is growing and clearly not limited to large brands.

“We’ve partnered with 20,000 merchants — big and small — to bring over 10 million unique products to Pinterest,” added Weingarten. With the involvement of so many merchants already, acceptance into the program must not be too rigorous.


Snapchat Video Views Are Up – Again

instagram video

Social media messaging app Snapchat has more than doubled the number of daily video views on its platform to 10 billion views in under a year. That’s up from 6 billion video views on Snapchat in November 2015 and 4 billion daily video views in September 2015.

This exponential growth of Snapchat daily video views represents a 150 percent increase in video consumption in just under a year. The boost has seen the service overtake Facebook in the video view stakes. By comparison, Facebook reported 8 billion daily video views in November 2015.

Snapchat Daily Video Views Have 24 Hour Visibility

In addition to exceeding Facebook’s daily video views, Bloomberg reports that more than a third of Snapchat users post to the app’s daily Stories feature, where photos and videos can be viewed for 24 hours before disappearing.

The fast increasing number of Snapchat daily video views is a blessing to businesses. And for businesses that aren’t using the service yet, here are a few reasons why they should:

Deliver Private Content

Businesses can use Snapchat to deliver special content to their audience. Think of something unique and compelling.  This has worked really well for fashion brands like Michael Kors and Rebecca Minkoff who have used the service to debut their collections to followers before they hit the runway.

Partner with Influencers

Like other social media channels, partnering with Snapchat influencers can help spread brand awareness and reach. You also have the advantage of reaching a demographic that would otherwise be hard to reach through traditional media.

Provide Access to Live Events

Snapchat is a great real-time social media marketing tool as it has the ability to offer the audience direct access to live events. Businesses can, therefore, use it for one-of-a-kind events like the 100th customer to shop in your store, product launches or trade shows. Your audience will stay entertained and excited because you are providing them with a different and more authentic view of your events.

Are you already using Snapchat for your business marketing? What’s your experience so far? Here are 5 more ways that you can use Snapchat to grow your business.


Herb Lubalin: Typographer – A e book that explores the typographic master

Herb Lubalin claimed no longer to be a remarkable typographer. “In reality,” he said, “I’m horrible,because I don’t observe the regulations.” This new book proves the other. On every page it featuresLubalin’s typographic genius (emblems, layouts, lettering and typefaces), and locations him at the forefrontof 20th century typographic innovation.

Lubalin is, by way of these days’s standards, a typographic grasp. the whole lot he did – operating in collaboration with some of the giants of lettering and kind – had the flicker of genius. He even had names for what he did: he described it as ‘photograph expressionism’ or ‘conceptual typography’. using hispotential to evolve, merge and create new typographic forms, he become capable of decorate and extendmeaning in methods that hadn’t been seen before.

Having published books celebrating the genius of Herb Lubalin as a graphic fashion designer running in lots of spheres, this new quantity Herb Lubalin: Typographer by way of Unit editions concentratescompletely on Lubalin’s typography. It comes with new texts, new design, new pictures, and masses ofpreviously unpublished material.

thru direct submission | All pictures courtesy of Unit variants

Assam is just the start for BJP – Manipur and Meghalaya are next

The Daily Fix: Assam is just the beginning for BJP – Manipur and Meghalaya are next

The cutting-edge: pinnacle tales of the day
1. non-public forecaster Skymet said on Tuesday that the monsoon might be 109% the longperiodaverage and will hit Kerala on time, a forecast that is greater constructive than the one by means of the Indian Meteorological department.
2. Sarbananda Sonowal was on Tuesday sworn in as chief minister of Assam, at an event at which he reiterated the promise to crack down on illegal immigration.
three. In Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan will today take the oath as leader minister of the Left Democratic the frontgovernment which has again to electricity.

The large tale: nearby Powerhouse

The swearing-in of latest Assam leader Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, the primary Bharatiya Janatabirthday celebration baby-kisser to run a North japanese state, got here with any other enormousdeclaration. BJP President Amit Shah announced the formation of a North East Democratic Alliance, a collection of parties and leaders with the BJP at its core that will are seeking for to increase control over states across the motive. Himanta Biswa Sarma, a former Congressman whose defection played a majorposition inside the Assam victory, became named convenor of the new NEDA.

in addition to the new leader minister of Assam, the alliance already consists of the leader ministers of Arunachal Pradesh (wherein the BJP exploited Congress instability to place a rebellion in price), in addition to the leaders of Nagaland and Sikkim, who’re nearby allies of the saffron party. This leaves out Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur and Tripura of the remaining North jap states.

Tripura is too firmly immersed in Left politics for even the Congress to make a dent, not to mention the BJP. Mizoram too seems really strong with the Congress for the instant. The remaining two however, are any other remember.

Manipur goes to the polls in just nine months, and it additionally happens to be a Hindu-majority kingdomwith a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh presence in its valley districts, best floor for the BJP to expand. Meghalaya in the meantime lately saw the defeat of a Congress candidate in Lok Sabha by using-elections, giving the saffron celebration desire that it could destabilise the government quickly sufficient.

surely the opportunities are there, and by means of setting up a formal alliance with a convenor, the BJP has sounded the bugle. What are the chances the Congress can muster its forces and reply?

The large Scroll
How BJP received this historic election in Assam (and what it way). Why Assam is likely to becomeHindutva’s new laboratory. four components that the BJP were given proper in this Assam campaign.

Politicking & Policying
1. Tamil Nadu leader Minister J Jayalalithaa claimed there has been no disrespect in setting the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam treasurer MK Stalin in the 16th row at her swearing-in ceremony, but it wasn’t the firsttime she has pulled this stunt and apologised after.
2. Congress individuals of Legislative meeting in West Bengal had been told to signal an task on stamp paper swearing loyalty to the party run by way of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.
three. Lucknow crowned a competition for the second round of clever cities, which focused onenhancing their authentic software to get funds from the Centre.
four. Odia changed into made obligatory for all authentic work in Odisha, with fines for folks who don’tuse it.
5. Communist birthday party of India leader D Raja has said that the want of the hour is reunification of the Left, asking “what’s the massive distinction among the CPI and the CPI(Marxist) on country widetroubles?”

1. AK Bhattacharyya in the business widespread offers two instructions for the Narendra Modiauthorities after years in strength: expectation control and federalism.
2. Shubhashis Gangopadhyay in the Telegraph praises a splendid courtroom judgment from closing week that officially declared a land clutch, despite the authorities as an middleman, as illegal.
3. “Indian communists, no matter being against globalisation and related neo-liberal guidelines, have no longer charted a concrete opportunity development strategy,” writes Prabhat Patnaik in the Hindu.
four. India’s democracy is going via an especially troubling duration of its basically paradoxical person, writes Ashutosh Varshney in the Indian explicit.

do not leave out
Raksha Kumar writes of ways Bastar police are using adivasis to combat adivasis – unleashing violence in the villages.

“Pudiyami Rame, a resident of Bade Gudra, who alleged the safety forces had crushed her twice in April,diagnosed 3 of them.“Shankar, Kiran and Badru come to our village repeatedly,” she said. “every time they arrive, they beat people up.” The 3 men, she claimed, labored with the Maoists in advance, and had surrendered to the police in January.

In recent years, Bastar police has been recruiting surrendered Maoists, and putting them in a special unitreferred to as the District Reserve defend, which leads the manner for CRPF patrols. “because those arelocal youngsters, human beings don’t forget their names very well,” said Isha Khandelwal, legal professional at the Jagdalpur criminal resource organization. “So, after an incident, they call the DRGyouth, giving a cowl to the CRPF men.”

2016 Pinterest Trends – What’s Next This Year?

pinterest feature

Does Pinterest still matter? Once it was the dominant visual social media network. But now Instagram and a host of trendier platforms, like Periscope and Snapchat, have solidly dethroned Pinterest’s claim as the visual network du jour.

But don’t count it out of your social media strategy just yet.

Pinterest, like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, remains an important space for businesses to “nurture, maintain and share their unique philosophy, integrity and corporate purpose” writes Marie Alonso on social media branding.

Ready to get your Pinterest strategy back on track? Below are some ways to use Pinterest in 2016.

2016 Pinterest Trends

Why the “Buy” Button Matters

Pinterest may not be as trendy as Instagram, but the network is hardly flying under the radar, especially after it kicked off the “buy button” invasion of 2015. The Internet officially has “buy button” fever, with networks from YouTube to Twitter joining in with shop-able buttons. The addition of buy buttons is huge for mobile ecommerce: consumers are more likely to purchase a product directly inside an app than clicking through multiple link layers to a third-party site. Now, any commerce company that uses Shopify, Demandware, IBM Commerce, Magento or Bigcommerce can utilize Pinterest’s buy buttons, streamlining the direct purchase process.

“Intent to buy” has long been what sets Pinterest apart from other networks. Pinterest boards are aspirational: from interior decorations and recipe collections to wedding planning and nursery design, the leap from dream to reality is just a click away. In the past, however, Pinterest users who were primed to make a purchase based on a pin were faced with a challenge.

Many pins may link back to old blog posts or products that are no longer for sale, making purchasing difficult. Motivated consumers would have to do a Google image search for the product or settle for a different item. A great discovery service needs inventory for continued expansion.

“By getting more merchants and more buyable pins and more products on the platform, we’re able to build smarter and better recommendations and search,” Michael Yamartino, Pinterest’s head of commerce, told Fortune.

Early results show that the buy button is working, especially when it comes to reaching new customers. The online clothing boutique Spool No. 72 reports that 84 percent of all customers acquired via buy button pins are new, according to Fortune. Handmade goods shop Madesmith says that as of October 2015, buyable pins already represented seven percent of all company sales. And Shopify reports that the average order coming from Pinterest is $50, higher than any other social media platform.

Small Business Brand Building on Pinterest

But what about small businesses that don’t sell merchandise online or aren’t ready for the buy button? Can these businesses leverage the power of Pinterest to continue to build their brands? Absolutely. Consistently pinning products or images that reflect your brand is key to building consumer relationships, strengthening brand loyalty and reaching new customers. Keep these best practices in mind:

Pin Consistently, but Space Out Your Pins

Aim to pin multiple times every day, rather than dumping 20+ pins all at once. (You’ll overload your follower’s feed and miss out on being seen by as wide an audience.) Simplify the process by scheduling pins ahead of time, just as you would schedule other social media postings to promote a blog article.

Buffer is one of my favorite tools for scheduling social media posts, including Pinterest. Buffer also comes with the image creator tool Pablo, so you can take a photo straight off your blog, overlay with custom typography, and scale it correctly for Pinterest.

Create Boards Matching Your Consumers’ Interests

Don’t turn your boards into a 24/7 stream of promotional material: create boards that naturally align with your customers’ interests. Aquarium Finatics, an online guide to setting up your first at-home aquarium has an incredibly diverse and creative Pinterest account ranging from the world’s best public aquariums and out-of-this-world hotel aquariums to Shark Week and Aquarium inspired gifts for kids.

This same diverse approach goes for selling merchandise. Women’s active wear company Athleta has boards titled “Go Outside”, “Fuel Your Fitness” and “Run Wild”, in addition to boards dedicated to showcasing the company’s products.

Be Part of Something Bigger

Invite your followers to participate in a shared pinning board, or join a few of your own. Hannah Crum, the creative force behind the brand Kombucha Kamp, shares her love for fermented/nutrient dense foods on Pinterest via community boards like “Whole Foods Recipes” and “Holistic Health Topics.”

Bottom Line

You don’t have to sell products directly on Pinterest with a “buy” button in order to build your brand. But you do need a consistent and diverse posting strategy. Pre-schedule pins for posting at peak times throughout the day.

Create gift guides, make a thoughtful reading list, invite followers to join community boards (or host guest pinners), and host giveaways exclusively for your followers.