When it comes to extracting maximum outcome one has to be cautious while comparing and weighing – the devil sitting on one shoulder and the angel sitting on the other – the quality approach over the quantity approach. Unlike cartoons, getting a pop-up devil or angel on your shoulder to help you choose is not going to happen.
Making a hasty decision will only leave you treading on thin ice.
When in a leadership position, the two proverbs that can influence your decision senses are “99.99% is not 100%” and “Better done, than never”. Being perfect can get you quality and being consistent can get quantity, but expecting both at the same time can be daunting. However, it is a challenge to make a timely decision to choose which path to take and when to take it.
Behold, it depends on how you frame it!
An excerpt from “When Breath Becomes Air” connected my strings of confusion. The line went something like this, “When I (Paul Kalanithi) knew that the terminal illness was nearing, I realised that technical achievement is only a moral requirement”. Beautifully instilled in this line, is the answer that helps one to make a decision when you get stuck.
From reading a lot of blogs and research articles, I found that a fine line runs through the two. From a blog’s perspective, in the battle between quality and quantity a reader will want quality, for it is their precious time being spent for reading your article, whereas a blogger will need quantity, for only then will the blog stand a chance in reaching better listings and ultimately get more views.
Regardless of the work you do, the quality approach or the quantity approach depends on how you view and want to direct the outcomes. There is no one guided tour that suits all!
It lies in the grey!
My mentor always tells that Life is not about mastering the black or white, it is about mastering the grey.
I believe the Yin and Yan symbol is not to show that one must master two extremes, rather it is to show how to find the balance between the two. Through experience what you will realise is that the two paths, either quality or quantity, can not work separately – a pragmatic approach would be to choose a middle path that balances both.
How to get at least one shade of grey? – 3 Easy Steps.
Research has found evidence that when your reputation is built strong people can assess your improvements quicker than declines. On the contrary when your reputation is weak people will grasp your declines faster than improvements.
Building a strong reputation not only fosters growth but also gives a cushion for improvement while doing what you love. However, it takes time and needs the middle path that combines both quality and quantity.
1 – Set yourself a frequency and differentiate the work you do.
Setting a frequency of your tasks to be done is setting an expectation that your audience can have on you. Higher the frequency means higher the expectation(Which is great!). By religiously practising your routine to stay above the minimum frequency can do wonders.
The next step would be to group your tasks either in high-quality work or high-frequency work.
Based on what you like doing, start grouping them either into high-quality tasks or high-frequency tasks. There is no harm in interchanging them once in a while. Do it a couple of times, and you will get the hang of it.
“If quantity is good for setting ideas, quality is good for setting a vision.”
2 – The comfortable expansion room with the support structure.
“As the saying goes, the cheapest ticket around the world is the library ticket.”
Make sure your day is spaced out for high-frequency tasks and your weeks are spaced for high-quality tasks. High-quality tasks need time. Omitting this fact is not an option. The more time and effort you put in, the better are the results. As shown in the table, you will need only small pockets of time for your high-frequency tasks.
With a comfortable expansion zone built around you, you will need a support structure. The best to get is through collaboration with a diverse set of people and reading.
The reality is, staying on course is like attempting to sprint faster than Bolt on the first try, however, with a dose of the magic potion you get from networking and reading, you can zoom faster than Flash and soar higher than an Eagle.
3 – The Formula to keep you in check
Set frequency [#of tasks] = high quality #tasks + high frequency #tasks
where, high quality #tasks < high frequency #tasks
Having a balance in this formula can give you your grey shade.
Slow and steady.
The discussions and disputes one over the other is never ending. Viewing it at an angle that merges both is not only pragmatic but also achievable. An overnight celebrity status may not be possible, but a deeper and lasting value creation may be.
I would love to discuss more on this with you. What are you waiting for? Comment below!