Is Perfection the Key to Success?

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Lefteris OikonomouFebruary 4 2024

Have you ever thought that Perfection was the Key to Success? 💡

A university Experiment

My view around work changed completely when I read the following story in James Clear’s Atomic Habits: 📖

“On the first day of class, Jerry Uelsmann, a photography professor at the University of Florida, divided his students into two groups. Everyone on the left side of the classroom, he explained, would be in the “quantity” group. They would be graded solely on the amount of work they produced. One hundred photos would rate an A, ninety photos a B, eighty photos a C, and so on.

Meanwhile, everyone on the right side of the room would be in the “quality” group. They would be graded only on the excellence of their work. They would only need to produce one photo during the semester but to get an A, it had to be a nearly perfect image.

At the end of the term, everyone was surprised to find that all the best photos were produced by the quantity group.

During the semester, these students were busy taking photos, experimenting with composition and lighting, testing out various methods in the darkroom, and learning from their mistakes. In the process of creating hundreds of photos, they honed their skills.

Meanwhile, the quality group sat around speculating about perfection. In the end, they had little to show for their efforts other than unverified theories and one mediocre photo.”

Quantinty

Quantity can lead to quality

What I got out of this:

Quantity leads to quality In the realm of creativity and learning, quantity can lead to quality. By focusing on the process rather than the outcome, embracing mistakes, and valuing continuous practice, students discovered that the path to excellence is often found in the freedom to explore, create, and iterate without fear of imperfection.

After reading that story whenever I want to improve my skills, I consider hands-on practice instead of educational content.

What's one area you could apply this 'quantity leads to quality' approach today❓

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