Using Speed as Your Strategy

"Ready, fire, aim is better than ready, aim, aim, aim." - Tom Peters

Speed and creativity are the entrepreneur’s greatest weapons. I have a passion for fast cars, but my passion for speed is not limited to pleasure behind the wheel. It includes my business because speed is an important strategy in business.

Two people whose books influenced my early career and made me err on the side of speed were Brian Tracy and Mark McCormick. Both men believe that most great ideas are killed or copied by others while people pursue perfection in developing them. I fully believe that a good idea executed quickly—even if it is less than perfect—will massively outperform a perfect idea that is implemented six months later. In addition, you’ll get months’ worth of leads that much earlier.

Hey—if you can be fast and perfect, so much the better. Just be FAST first. Let me give you a world-class example of this theory in action.

Microsoft NEVER releases a perfect product; in fact, far from it. Instead, it works quickly to develop new technologies it then releases to John Q. Public and lets him find all the bugs so the company can fix them. That’s even cheaper than outsourcing the debugging offshore because it’s FREE! Now, I am sure that Microsoft wishes it could put out a perfect product, but it also realizes that being ahead of its competitors in launching products is far more important than having a perfect product.

The bottom line is this—if you have a good idea or a need for new clients, get in gear and get something going. Do it on a small scale if you have to, so you can make changes inexpensively later if need be. BUT don’t drag out the process for weeks in search of perfection. Innovate, but don’t overbuild. Good is usually good enough to succeed and takes less time, money, and effort to achieve. While others are busy working on choosing the perfect type font, you will have already licked the stamps on your latest campaign and be heading for the post office.

At every stage of your business life there are people looking to slow you down, people looking for perfection in an imperfect world. Let others struggle with the vice of perfection.

In today’s fast-paced world, people are rarely prepared to wait for anything very long. Instant food, overnight delivery, and 24-hour shipping is the norm.

How can you offer your product or services faster than your competition?

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