“Done” should be spelled F-A-I-L

"Your shipment of fail has arrived."

“It’s almost done, I just need to add this one more thing…”

Whooooooa there.

When you teach designers & developers to bootstrap their own product businesses, as I do, that’s a phrase you’ll hear a lot — and you’ll come to hear it (as I do) as the sound of a shotgun being removed from a cabinet, loaded, cocked, and fired into the foot of the potential of the person saying it. Boom.

The insidious fantasy of “Done” is that…

  1. perfection is possible
  2. perfection means it can’t be rejected

In reality, no plan survives contact with the enemy. (Sub “enemy” with “real live customers and the universe at large.”)

“Done” is a mental trick people use to avoid reality. “If it’s not done, I don’t have to launch. If I don’t launch, I can’t fail.”

Except, of course, that not launching is failure. The most preventable kind.

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  1. Galen

    Hi Amy,

    Great post! I think the mythical idea of “perfection” holds so many entrepreneurs back from doing what’s best for their business right now.

    Instead they get stuck in this waiting game and then, before they know it, a year goes by and nothing happens…

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Marjan

    If I don’t launch, I can’t fail. Except, of course, that not launching is failure. The most preventable kind.

    So true!

    The title of this post will be up on my fridge very shortly…

  3. Andy Brice

    My product has ‘perfect’ in the title and it has been for sale and continuously improved for over 9 years now. It still isn’t ‘done’ though!


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