Planning for Productivity, not Paralysis

Be Prepared… the meaning of the motto is that a scout must prepare himself by previous thinking out and practicing how to act on any accident or emergency so that he is never taken by surprise. – Robert Baden-Powell

Perfectly Planned? Positively Prepared?  

“Sure, I’ve got one right here”, I say, rummaging through my oversized bag to find the item in need. That  item could be a paperclip, a pen, a bandaid, antiseptic, wet wipes, flashlight, Tylenol, cough drop, measuring tape, or foldable emergency flip flops (I’m serious).

In fact, I once had a colleague remark at a sales meeting that I had everything but a defibrillator in my bag. I’m not sure if they were more impressed, or disgusted. Like the Boy Scout:  I’m always prepared.  Yay!

An excess of planning can stall implementation

But plans and preparation that are too complex are not always successful.  Getting buried in the overwhelming details of the minutiae means there's a risk of getting stuck. Stuck, and then stalled. 

Often, the more detailed the plan, the harder it will be to achieve each little piece. Things can go sideways, somewhere, somehow.  They usually do.

Beware Analysis Paralysis

And many of us can fall prey quite easily to the analysis paralysis phenomenon.  As we overthink the details, we can find ourselves sweating the small stuff! 

"If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you'll never get it done." -- Bruce Lee

Procrastination can set in.  We don't take any action at all, because we are so focused on over-thinking and over-analyzing.  The fear of getting it wrong, or making mistake, or not being prepared for every single eventuality stops us from getting anything actually done. 

An old manager of mine - early on in my professional career - advised me to aim for excellence, not for perfection.  I've tried to keep that in mind when I find myself in a dangerous analysis paralysis situation.  Remembering that has helped me stop (over)thinking  my plans, and start getting my things done. 

Though I still keep enough emergency supplies in my bag that Mary Poppins herself would be proud. 

"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing" - Walt Disney

Do you need help getting started?  Let me know, I'd love to chat!