“Good-Enough” Cultures:
Billion Dollar Waste and Failure

Good-enough-failureIn organizations with good-enough” cultures, billions of dollars are wasted each year by leaders and staff who compromise on standards. Such leaders endanger themselves and their careers by permitting a “good-enough” mentality. This risk engenders wide-spread mediocrity, but fortunately, it has a remedy.

“Only the mediocre are always at their best.” ~ Jean Giraudoux, French essayist

The good-enough culture plagues an organization in every aspect of its operation, all the way down to the most basic. Some of the more prominent effects are:

  • Lack of productivity
  • Staff turnover
  • Defective products
  • Warranty costs
  • Safety costs
  • Inefficiency and waste
  • Dissatisfied customers
  • Lost sales
  • Layoffs
  • Shrinking profits
  • Poor reputation

Leaders experience many unseen problems buried down under the details of every department. What I’ve seen in my coaching practice is that if not corrected, these issues feed on themselves.

Slow Failure

When organizations fail, it’s not always because they’ve crashed to the bottom. Leaders often cause slow failure simply by allowing mediocrity to set in. When things are “good enough,” people are lulled into complacency and a false sense of security. They are unprepared to respond effectively when the bleeding begins, and gradual decline ensues.

Caring about excellence is everything. A truthful leader molds a team that improves communication, timeliness and a thorough review of all difficult issues, large and small. A leader who’s considerate of others demonstrates the importance of relationships to success. Leaders who commit to such responsibility raise the level of accountability within their staff. Employees who are held to account by their manager also hold each other to account. Determined leaders foster a group spirit that overcomes challenges that once made people surrender.

In the following series of posts, I’m going to explore mediocrity in a good-enough culture, how it takes root, and how leaders can overcome the good-enough syndrome and transform their organization.

For now, think about what it’s like where you work. Are you seeing the effects of a “good-enough” culture? Is there a laissez-faire attitude? I’d love to hear from you. Give me a call, 704-827-4474. Or, you can reach me here and on LinkedIn.

This entry was posted in executive leadership, strategy and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>