Allison Liddle, in her book, “The Art of Imperfect Action, All Success Comes from Daring to Begin” teaches us that life isn’t perfect so there really is no such thing as perfect action. There is only imperfect action that renders a result where we can fine tune our next action based off that result. We then can adjust our aim. When is the last time you didn’t fix yourself a sandwich because you were waiting on the perfect way to stack the toppings? Now, you might be stickler for where you want your tomato, but I am positive that you don’t wait around for the best way to eat lunch before you satisfy your craving.
So, what are you craving? I don’t mean your stomach. I mean your life, your dream. What you crave, you take action on. And you don’t care if it’s perfect or not. I remember when I asked my wife out for the first time. I butchered it so bad. It was definitely imperfect. But it led to a wonderful life together. We have had many imperfect actions together and we have learned great lessons in the process. And from those lessons we have generated great memories.
Imperfect action leads to great results. As leaders who are leading on each level of your organization, you want to promote imperfect action knowing that the focus is on the prize rather than the process. It is on the what rather than the how. Promoting imperfect action promotes a safe environment to share ideas, promotes an innovative environment. Promotes an environment not afraid to take risks. Not afraid to step out of your comfort zone not afraid to fail forward. Promoting imperfect action promotes forward movement. The key word is action. Action brings results. When you establish a culture of action, you provide opportunity to collaborate. You give opportunity for feedback between you and your team. Between you and middle management. When feedback comes in, you can evaluate results, make adjustments and go at it again.
Now, I am not referring to those mechanical processes and OSHA approved measures that must be followed. We all know that there are certain things that must be done a certain way without fail. I am talking about growth in your company. I am talking about upward mobility, new deals, expanded services, higher levels to function on.
Waiting until you get it right or even worse being so resistant to failing that you get into analysis paralysis will only frustrate you and your team. Allowing imperfect action to pave the way to better results will forge a path of growth in your company.