Canadian Lawyer InHouse

October/November 2021

Legal news and trends for Canadian in-house counsel and c-suite executives

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Page 29 of 35

28 FEATURE In a culture focused on achievement, success and making things perfect, how can leaders know when striving for something better is a waste of time? Lynne Cazaly explains how to let go of perfection and embrace 'good enough' HOW OFTEN while working on a task or project have you thought, "It's not done yet," "It's not good enough" or "I couldn't share that … it has to be better"? We can feel it's not good enough yet and believe there's still work to be done to make it better, to make it perfect. Shouldn't you try to do things perfectly? It turns out, no, not at all. Research by Argyro Avgoustaki and Hans Frankort, gathered from more than 50,000 people across 36 countries over a five-year period, showed that extra work effort was "associated with reduced well-being and inferior career-related outcomes." Avgoustaki and Frankort's research showed that the harder people worked, the more likely they were to report stress, lower satisfaction and inferior outcomes. Working too hard burns us out and doesn't result in the success — career or otherwise — that we might expect. It sounds crazy, but their research found that doing less at work can actually help us achieve more. We can afford to spend less time on things thanks to two theories of activity. The law of diminishing returns (that our return on effort When to go for good enough

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