Gary Winters

Coach  Workshop Facilitator Author

G is for Good…enough

Good EnoughWhen is good enough good enough?

You see it all the time. That draft of the report is good enough. The presentation to staff was good enough. The error rate on product defects was good enough. The budget for that new project was good enough. The response time to customer emails is good enough.

What sustains the tension between “good enough” and “excellence” is that there simply isn’t enough time, money, or resources to move everything from good enough to great, but we want to do our best work. Right? We know we could improve our deliverables,  whatever they are.

So how do you decide when good enough is good enough? When action is more important than improvement? Here’s three suggestions to keep in mind:

  1. When a life is on the line.

    While having an actual life on the line is pretty rare (thank goodness!) the point is this: when the need to act clearly supersedes the need to perfect whatever you’re working on, act.Remember Apollo 13? In the race against time to save the astronauts, engineers jerry-rigged an air filter made with duct tape. No doubt as engineers they would have liked to keep testing and improving their design, but urgency had to trump elegance.
  2. When incremental improvements are becoming a hobby.

    I recall studies down when desktop publishing became widely available that showed that productivity did not rise, as expected. It slowed down because people were endlessly tweaking their products – because they could. True, the bar of professionalism had been raised, and what was acceptable before (a typewritten newsletter, for example) was not acceptable now.
  3. When you’ve crossed the 5 yard line.

    If you’ve invested a big chunk of time and effort to create a solid draft of the report, or a beta website, or a working prototype, you’ve probably no more than five yards from the goal line of perfection. The problem is that the next five yards will probably require as much time and effort as what you’ve already expended.Maybe it’s time to publish the report, launch the website, or start producing the product. Rarely is it true that it can’t be improved afterwards.

    I wrote my first book several years ago. Even today, I see ways of improving it. But if I’d waited until I’d exhausted all the possible improvements, I’d still be an unpublished author.


This article is part of a series of 26 posts for the month of April called “Blogging from A to Z,” an idea first suggested by Arlee Bird of Tossing It Out.


“What ELSE Your Boss Never Told You” is the sequel to the very popular “What Your Boss Never Told You.” Packed inside are more tips, techniques, and insights about the challenging, but rewarding leadership position.

“What ELSE Your Boss Never Told You” is written in a conversational tone, as though you and the author were enjoying a cup of coffee and talking about the issues that emerge for new leaders. It stands alone, and/or could be read before or after the first volume, “What Your Boss Never Told You.” You can start with any chapter and read in any order you like.

if you search for a book on management, you’ll find a staggering 600,000+ books currently available. How can you narrow that down? “What Your Boss Never Told You” is the best place to start.

No textbook here – this book is short and sweet. It’s designed to help you “unpack” your new job and be effective from the first day with your new team. It contains twenty-one chapters filled with the wisdom Winters has gathered from real managers – effective, successful leaders in organizations much like yours.

Leaders make decisions every day – big and small. Most know that if they include others in the decision-making process, the quality of those decisions – and the commitment to them – will likely improve. That said, they also know it’s impractical, if not impossible, to include others in every decision they confront.

“To Do or Not To Do” tackles the question of when to make decisions on your own, and when to involve your team. It gives you a deceptively simple but proven method to determine, when you are facing a difficult decision, how to decide how to decide.

Far too many meetings are dreadful, mind-numbing, energy-draining, productivity-sapping, colossal wastes of time. As someone once said, “To kill time, a meeting is the perfect weapon.”

Here’s the deal: if you’re willing to learn and apply the techniques in “So, How Was Your Meeting?”, you’ll call fewer meetings, while vastly improving the ones you do lead. They’ll take less time, have more balanced participation, produce better decisions, and result in concrete action items for follow-up afterwards.

While there are thousands of books written for people about to retire, this may be the only book for people who manage soon-to-retire employees. Written in a casual, conversational style, “Managing the Soon To Retire Employee” will give you everything you need to know to move forward with confidence and grace.

You can be successful with Sooners. It won’t happen by chance, and it’s not a matter of pulling some management “trick” out of your hat. But you can learn how to do it, and you can apply what you’ve learned right away.

Managing friends or former peers can be awkward. When you become the boss, everything about these relationships can suddenly be uncomfortable. There’s a new set of ground rules to establish – as manager, you are going be accountable for the work performance of friends or former co-workers on the team, and they are going to have to adjust to the fact that they now report to you. Everyone involved can feel awkward and hesitant about the future. 

Have you been approached by management with an offer to promote you to supervision? Or, are you mulling over the possibility for the future? Find yourself not sure whether to accept the promotion?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. Help! They Want to Make ME a Supervisor will help you sort out a very big question: Should you accept the offer to become a supervisor? Once you’ve read this book, you’ll be confident that you’ve made the best decision for you and for your organization.