When Launching a Business, Done Is Better Than Perfect

There are just under 29 million small businesses in America, according to The US Small Business Administration. This means that there are roughly 29 million extremely brave people out there — because as anyone who’s considered starting a business knows, taking that leap of faith and striking out on your own requires courage.

If you’re weighing whether to pursue your dream of launching a business, it can be tempting to wait until the timing feels perfect. But launching a business will always be a gamble, and oftentimes, taking a calculated risk is the only way to reap any business benefits. Sometimes done is better than perfect.

Don’t let fear get in the way

Many people fear failure. A healthy dose of fear is reasonable. Sacrificing job security for the instability of self-employment will come with a little bit of hesitance. But, fear can become so paralyzing for certain people that it prevents them from even trying.

If you have a good idea that you’re passionate about, why not try to make it happen? The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that about 80 percent of businesses survive their first year, so the odds of launching a viable business are already in your favor. Sure, there’s still a chance of failure — but if you let that hold you back, you’ll never know whether your business might have become a success.

Do your due diligence

Whether you want to open a restaurant, flower shop, or graphic design firm, it’s critical to understand the industry, your future customers, and what it will cost to run your business.

Developing a solid Pro plan is the first step, but you should dig deeper by networking with experienced people in your industry. If you’re running a local brick-and-mortar business, establishing these connections early on could help to build community awareness and support for your company.

Go with your gut

Striving for perfection can lead to decision paralysis, and the longer that you put off making a decision, the longer it will take for your business to launch.

Conducting research will help you make an informed decision, but your intuition can also guide you in the right direction and stave off that decision paralysis.

Whether it’s deciding to lease a space in a specific location, enlisting the help of a partner in exchange for equity in the business, picking a platform on which to build your website, or rolling out a new product line, we often have a gut reaction when deciding whether we should do something. If that initial feeling isn’t a good one, then you might have an answer.

Learn from your mistakes

In the early years of Facebook, the company had a few key mottos, according to TechCrunch: “Done is better than perfect” and “Move fast and break things.” Though these mottos referred to Facebook’s product development process, many business owners can learn from these principles.

Sometimes we learn life’s most important lessons after we’ve failed. The key is to fail fast and to learn from these mistakes.

Though Facebook eventually moved away from this model as the company matured, these concepts are partly what drove it from startup to success. The motto “done is better than perfect” reveals the importance of having something completed instead of waiting until everything is perfect — because even if you fail, you can always readjust and try again.

When it comes to launching a business, you can spend a lot of time wringing your hands thinking about whether something is worth doing. But while you think on it, you might miss the opportunity to accomplish your goal. Becoming a successful business requires a lot of bravery and tolerance for risk, and nothing about the process is ever perfect. But, as the saying goes, “don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.” Learning to accept that your best is often good enough may help you push through the fear and recognize your dream.


Satta Sarmah Hightower

Satta Sarmah is a writer, editor and content marketing manager who launched her first personal website a decade ago — on WordPress, of course.

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