To some, for example, a pair of tired laborers, the phrase could be considered a positive one. “That work looks good enough to me” they may say to each other as they move onto the next task whilst looking forward to finishing the day off. I would be lying if I said I was not, at one point in time, subscribed to this view. Not so coincidentally it was during this time I found myself focusing on quantity rather than quality. Let’s look at a few scenarios where this phrase could be used.
1.) A rocket scientist tells the crew of a space shuttle that his calculations were good enough and that they will make it to the international space station in one piece.
2.) An investment manager tells a retired couple their portfolios are doing good enough.
3.) A business owner tells you his service is good enough and that you’ll be happy with the outcome.
I don’t know about you but I know in all cases I would be somewhat concerned if someone said those things to me. This brings us to the second view one could take on the phrase, that it is in fact negative. Merely a self-reassurance disguised to help us swallow the guilt of not doing a better job. This is a view I now strongly take into all aspects of life. Putting quality ahead of quantity. If I ever find myself saying that something is good enough I take a step back and re-evaluate. Most of the times I find that it is not to my standards. Rather than ask if something is good enough we should ask ourselves “is this the best we could do given the circumstances.” If it’s not the best we could do then it is indeed not good enough and we are simply trying to lie to ourselves. This is a philosophy I hold myself, my company, and my employees to and implore you to do the same. A simple change of the phrasing may just make a difference to someone.