Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted by on Sep 2, 2015 in Blog, Happiness, Leadership | 2 comments

The Enemy of Good is Better

Last week we began a Leadership series. We outlined 7 (really 4) morsels of leadership. These are morsels because these points are not the entirety of what makes a good leader. And frankly,  someone ALOT smarter than me would have to tell you all there is to say about leadership. I just know about the morsels.

If you recall from last week, the first morsel is the enemy of good is better.

I know, I know…I admit when I first heard this I thought it was, well…STUPID!  If fact, when it was first stated to me I took it upon myself to say that out loud. I mean seriously, there is even a book many of us have read and bought into that states the complete opposite! Give me a second, I’ll explain…weight-lifter-882365_1280

I remember , I was in session with a surgeon many years ago. In our discussion he said “the enemy of good is better.” And that’s when I said those magic little words,”that’s stupid!”  (Take my word on this, don’t say that to a surgeon! ) He went on to explain in a quite condescending tone, a suture is intended to hold tissue together to prevent bleeding and promote healing; that is its ONLY purpose, its job. Its job is not to be the most perfect little suture that the world did see!  In fact, if you go back and try to make it perfect, you will damage tissue!  If the suture is good enough, IT IS GOOD ENOUGH!

It got me thinking about some of my own patterns. I remember in college getting a 97% on an exam. Awesome, right?!  That’s not the way I saw it. That was 7% too high!!  I studied way too long!  I could have stayed out at the bar a little longer the night before and talked to the hot girl next to me and maybe even have gotten her number! An A is an A whether it’s a 90, a 95, or a 97!  Now that wasn’t true for all my classes; in some I wanted that 97. But others, eh!…Maybe this isn’t the best example, or one you want to share with your college kid, but you get the idea!

So now it is your turn to chew on this a bit. This week, consider where in your life are you damaging tissue.  Where can you give yourself a break and let good enough be good enough? Trust me, in the long run you will be happier!


  1. Must admit, it took a bit for that truth to soak in. But now that it is — wow! Shoulders relaxing, taking a big breath and smiling.

    Good stuff – thanks for sharing!!

  2. Good point. In the workplace I have seen people so focused on a perfect work product that by the time they were satisfied with the result, timing made it meaningless or worse. Also it can make them deaf to good advice coming from good but not outstanding people.


  1. Leadership takes Humility | Happy Matters - […] our Leadership Series! If you didn’t catch the previous morsels, you can click here to view Morsel 1 and…

Post a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *