Launch Beta Then IterateOne of the world’s best known software companies has a fascinating way of doing things: they launch a fairly good yet unperfected product (a “beta” product) and then they start the iteration/improvement process to clean up the bugs. Each new version (2.0/3.0 etc) is better than the previous one and eventually they grow closer to getting it to a place called Flawless. Fascinating way of doing things.

This approach allows the organization to be an intense hub of product releases – and to often be the first to market while their competitors quietly toil away in obscurity, hoping to reach perfection before they offer their software to the world. And it gives the company a valuable psychological advantage because they are constantly bringing value to those who keep them in business.

Yes, I completely agree with the arguments saying “but why send less than perfect products out to customers?” etc. Offering your stakeholders nothing less than your absolute best is a great way to build a “durable competitive advantage”, to use Warren Buffet’s words. But playing with the idea behind the approach is definitely a valuable exercise for anyone interested in leadership and exceptionalism.

So, let me ask you, where do you hold back from releasing to the world because you are waiting to reach perfection versus sending out beta – and then iterating (and fixing the bugs)?

Is it a new service that you know would help your clients?

Is it that book you’ve always wanted to write?

Is it a project that you are certain would change the game for your business?

Maybe the answer is to model Nike’s old tag line and JDI: Just Do It. Just get it out. Just launch it. Just shout it out from the mountaintop. And then, start the process of making it an eventual masterpiece.

Keep Leading Without A Title.

Robin Sharma

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