If there’s one thing I’ve learned since joining the Audienz team, it’s that we just won’t leave well enough alone. And that’s a good thing.
It’s true that most people who choose creativity for a living strive for perfection. Content creators stay up late trying to conjure a more inspired analogy or create a more elegant design. When your reputation is on the line, you want it to be impeccable. We all do.
At Audienz, I’ve noticed a set of traits that allow our team to consistently deliver better than good enough quality, while mitigating the effects on cost and schedules.
- Confidence – Confidence is difficult to measure for individuals when it comes to creative endeavors. At our most confident, we feel like we can take any piece of content and make it transcend. It can also be fleeting. Maybe you aren’t as comfortable with a concept or technology. Maybe you didn’t get enough sleep last night. But even within those extremes, I see a confidence at Audienz to listen to the nagging little voice in our heads that pushes us to fix things that aren’t necessary broken, but can be better.
- Collaboration – Every content creator has felt like they’re on a deserted island. It’s up to you to create, edit, and deliver a piece of content. You pound your head against the wall trying to find ways to improve. On every project I have worked on at Audienz, I’ve had the freedom to collaborate with my talented colleagues, whether it’s a team effort from the beginning, or a final peer review before delivering to a client. In all cases, my teammates inspire better content. Whether it’s a helpful suggestion, a comment that stimulates new ideas, or a change in perspective that shapes the entire piece.
- Trust – You need to trust your instincts when you feel something is not good enough. You need to trust that you are capable of improving on your already good work. You also need to trust the intentions of your collaborators. This is tough. When you solicit feedback, you are trusting that the reviewer is working with you to obtain better results. If you let your ego get in the way (“Why are you changing my work?”) or you believe that your teammates have more suspicious intentions (such as the need to put their own stamp on your project for personal gain), you might as well be back on that island again. At Audienz, people respect this trust relationship, which allows for everyone to help each other move past good enough.
- Discipline – Discipline is what keeps you from being the dreamer on the quest for perfection. At Audienz, we use discipline to build review cycles into the schedule. Discipline to get drafts done early enough to allow changes. Discipline to know how much time we have to revise before we have to deliver. It takes discipline to balance the push for excellence against the need to meet deliverables.
- Realistic Expectations – At Audienz, we hire great people and expect to deliver great content. That’s a realistic expectation. It’s not reasonable to expect perfection. However, great sits neatly between satisfactory and perfect, and stands as an achievable goal.
When you can project confidence, solicit open and honest feedback, trust as individuals and teammates, remain disciplined, and possess a desire to be great, your content can be better than good enough.