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Just enough

Good Group Tips

In principle, when we decide more than we have to, say more than we have to, or do more than just enough to get the job done, it might cause trouble.

We don’t have to decide everything right now. It works well to decide only what we have to, see how that plays out and then decide the next steps. One step at a time.

We don’t have to say everything we’re thinking. It works to first consider the purpose of speaking and then say just enough to achieve the purpose.

We don’t have to do too much, over-fix things, or fix things that aren’t really broken. That often causes inefficiency.

Practical Tip: You don’t have to do it all right now, or say it all, or decide it all. It’s okay to put some decisions off. Break projects into pieces and make decisions in pieces. The smaller the pieces, the less chance of bad decisions with big impact and the more chance of building on lessons learned.

– Craig Freshley

Click here for one-page PDF of this Tip, a great way to print or share.

8 thoughts on “Just enough

  1. Michael,
    I love this phrase. And sentiment.
    “Good Enough For Now and Safe Enough To Try.”
    Thank you!

  2. This post highlights the importance of negotiating the decision making standard a group will use in a facilitated meeting and the need participants have for safety. I sponsor both those discussions early in the meeting process so that, when we get to the decision making part of the process, we are not hamstrung by the search for perfection. Here is the cliche’ I use to capture this essence,

    “Good Enough For Now and Safe Enough To Try.”

    A group, in my experience, is not ready to decide until these two needs are met. I have lapel buttons made with this slogan and often hand them out to participants after our discussion and negotiation on the decision making standard.

    So, I hope you find this tip helpful and Good Enough For Now and Safe Enough To Try!

  3. I am one of those who used to think I had to get it all done, do it all….even if it wasn’t mine to do. I was the classic over-achiever. When I tried to do it all, I got in trouble by undermining others’ abilities. Just enough, made me realize I just have to do what is mine to do. Particularly in the work I do, which is in the helping field. Doing just enough allows others to do for themselves.

  4. The tip on “Just Enough” is right on the money. The more years I have under my belt as an adminstrator and as a group member the more I realized the value of keeping my mouth shut. Better to say what directly affects the project at hand then to wonder about if this happens or that happens and if so we should do this or that. It is a waste of everyone’s good time as we cannot live in the future we can only live in the now. We can hope that our decisions now will produce good results in the future. Better for the group to remain in the present focused on the objectives and resources to make it happen.

  5. Great reminder that sometimes simplicity is best…focusing and being concise and intentional often results in better productivity, etc.

  6. This specific tip from Good Group Decisions says that you should aim for just enough decisions made at a time (which also gives better chances to learn from experience in an agile way).

  7. There is a saying in the marine world “if you can’t tie a knot, tie a lot.” I feel sometimes people do or say more because they are not sure of themselves or their position.

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