“Art is never finished, only abandoned” – Leonardo da Vinci
Have you heard that quote before? I hadn’t – but it reminds me of another:
“Perfection is the enemy of good enough” – the inverse is also true, though I think it’s less applicable because when perfection is your goal, it’s the only thing that matters.
Anyhow – have you ever finished a really big project? Did you perfect it or did you abandon it when it was good enough?
Finishing something big takes a long time – usually a really long time. When NASA talks about putting a new type of shuttle into space, that’s decades of work. It’s “done” when you get a shuttle into space, but it’s not. Constant tuning, improving, etc makes that project endless – until someone decides there’s no more funding and then it’s abandoned. Even massive failure doesn’t mean you are done, it just means you have to improve.
If you are trying to affect major change, as we often do in Operations and Security, don’t make your goal to be done. What fun is that? It’s a frustrating goal because it takes a really long time to reach and if you reach it, you are instantly bored. The fun, the challenge, the learning is in the journey, not in being done. So make the most of it.