Where Perfectionism is Impacting Your Business

Perfectionism can cost your business in more ways than one. In this episode I’ll share three areas where perfectionism may be impacting your business, and my best tips for how to overcome perfectionism so you can grow your conscious business and make a bigger impact. 

I’m a natural perfectionist. I like things in my business to look and sound just right. But over the years I’ve seen how perfectionism can and has held me and my business back. In fact, in some instances it’s directly impacted not only my bottom line, but my ability to make a bigger impact. In this episode I’ll share three areas where perfectionism may be impacting your business, and my best tips for how to overcome perfectionism, just get over yourself and put “good enough” you out there. 

Now in some professions and areas of life perfectionism is needed. Like the medical profession. 

My sister is a surgeon and carries out some of the most difficult medical surgeries, often for hours on end without being able to take a break. She needs a precision, a focus and a bladder of steel second to none. If she makes a mistake the worst case scenario is that her patient will die. It’s obvious that her perfectionistic traits are an asset in her profession. When I need surgery I want a perfectionist surgeon operating on me. 

In my environmental engineering career I’ve undertaken countless rounds of groundwater, surface water, soil, dust and gas monitoring events. During these tasks I have to follow strict decontamination procedures and methods to avoid contaminating or cross contaminating my samples. My perfectionistic traits are an asset here as cross contaminating samples can result in me needing to re-do the entire monitoring event. 

However, in online business, where you can make tweaks as you go and where authenticity is valued higher than a slick looking website, perfectionism can hold you back. In fact, it can do more than that, it can mean you’re slow to move and therefore get left behind in the fast-paced digital world. 

There’s many areas where perfectionism may be showing up in your business, but regardless of where it’s showing up the impacts are the same. Perfection costs you more and perfectionism impacts your authenticity.  

Let’s unpack these a bit further…… 

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Perfectionism Costs You More 

When I launched my first online eco business Sustainababy in 2009, I wanted the best website money could buy. I needed it to look just right. 

And so I invested in a branding agency to create my logo and website design, and a custom website agency to build my website. The result was a perfect website that converted from day one. But I was also $20K down…before I’d even invested in stock. It was a risk that paid off in this case, as I’d recovered that $20K in a few short months, but it was a risk I didn’t need to take. 

I was also stuck with a custom built website that needed thousands re-invested in it every time I needed a change. I quickly grew tired of this when I realised I was paying my web developers much more than me. 

At a later date in my business when I was ready to launch my first ecourse I’d again have a branding agency and custom website build my Home Detox Boot Camp sales page. Again this was a big outlay up front and I’d paid it off by my second launch, but it was money that went to others when it should have gone to my family.  

By my third launch I invested in a new sales page and membership site for the course using a WordPress platform and it not only functioned much better than my original custom built website, it cost me thousands of dollars less. 

Is there an area in your business where perfectionism is costing you more? 

It might be that you’re taking too much time to get your website right before you launch. You need a certain button to be a certain colour. Text to be in the right place. 12 podcast eps recorded before you launch your podcast.  

One of the most successful online entrepreneurs I know has a terrible website from a branding perspective. It’s bland and boring, yet super functional. He doesn’t waste any time on button colours. He just gets on with showing up for his following and helping his clients. 

Perfectionism Makes You Unrelatable 

Another area where perfectionism was showing up for me in my business was in my videos. 

I’ve used video in my business to connect with my audience since 2014. But initially I always invested in a videographer, got my hair done and eyebrows tinted, wore make up, wore my nicest clothes, removed my glasses and put my contacts in (which I can’t stand), scripted my video copy out and read my lines from a teleprompter. 

Only when I did all these things did I feel comfortable enough to put myself on screen. 

When Facebook rolled out their LIVE feature a couple of years ago I would do anything to get out of doing a LIVE video. 

But I could see where the online trends were going (which are mainly video, video, video… and in particular live video) and I was feeling so uneasy. If I could have bargained with Facebook to remove their LIVE video feature I probably would have! 

You get the picture… I kept putting them off because I didn’t want things to “go wrong” and make me “look bad”. 

I wanted my videos to be “perfect”. 

But I quickly learned that perfect isn’t relatable. 

After making a huge effort to get over myself and just do more LIVE videos a conversation I had with a friend helped me see LIVE streaming totally differently. 

She mentioned how she watched the LIVE streams of my 5 day Green Cleaning and LOVED them. 

Her favourite part? 

When I spilt the olive oil all over myself and the dresser I was polishing (I’ve cut the snippet and uploaded here for your viewing pleasure). 🙂 

She said she loved my facial expression and went back a few times to watch it again and again after the video posted. 

I was like “really”? 

And she was like “TOTALLY!” 

She said she LOVES watching live streams because they’re real. Things go wrong and she’ll watch them time and time again when they do. (This just helps your video get seen by more and more people by the way). 

Also the fact that they just make her relate to the person doing them so much better as they’re a “real” person. (Videos, especially LIVE videos, really increase connection and trust…..and remember, people buy from people they know, like and trust). 

It made me think about a Facebook LIVE I watched recently and LOVED. 

The bit I loved the most was when the presenter dropped the phone and burst out laughing because she “dropped us!!”. And yes, I’ve watched it again and again and keep laughing at that point and it made me just like the presenter even more. 

So….. if you’ve been putting off LIVE video streaming in your business pages…. JUST. DO. IT. 

Seriously, if you’re putting it off because you want your videos to be perfect, forget it. 

Your followers don’t want perfect. They want YOU! 

Your audience are human. Be human. Don’t be afraid to be seen to make mistakes.  

Perfectionism Stops You Scaling 

Think that there’s no one else that can do tasks in your business as well as you? Reluctant to hand tasks over? 

It’s likely that perfectionism is stopping you from building a team, an essential step to take for your business, profits and impact to scale. 

How to overcome: Record video procedures for every task to help with training and step back. Let your staff make mistakes and learn. In time you’ll be so glad you let your perfectionism go as your staff take on more and more in your business. Maybe you can even go on holidays occasionally!  

Final Thoughts

So as a recovering perfectionist I want to leave you with a few tips to overcome perfectionism yourself.  

The first is to change your mindset from “must be perfect” to “done is better than perfect”. Put your products and services out there before you’re ready and tweak as you go.  

Conscious Business Builders is a perfect example! At the time of publishing this podcast the outro still points to my lauratrotta.com website and I don’t yet have transcriptions for the episodes up on my website. In fact my conscious business builders website is only just ready to launch in the most basic form. 

The second is to ask yourself what is your minimum viable product… and then launch that. In creating Conscious Business Builders there’s a million different things I could do from multiple online courses, an ongoing membership to live events and intensive masterminds. But in starting right now, I’ve just rolled out my minimum viable product… this podcast, followed up with 1:1 coaching with me. I can add all the rest, if I want to, as I go. But I doubt I will because these days it’s less about being perfect for me, and more about making a bigger impact with ease. 

Please don’t let perfectionism get in the way of you and the bigger impact you want to make in the world. Focus on getting your minimum viable product out there and maintain a done is better than perfect mindset and you’ll truly be able to progress at a paced you’ve only previously dreamed of. 

If you’re ready to make a bigger impact with ease you can now work with me via my Conscious Coaching Taster Sessions or my High Performance Conscious Business Builders Coaching Package. 

Feel free to comment below or share your experience in our new Conscious Biz Creators Facebook community.

That’s right! I’ve set up a FREE Conscious Biz Creators Community on Facebook to help you get the strategies and support you need to create a thriving and profitable conscious business in the online space. You can join here.

Laura

Laura Trotta is one of Australia’s leading home sustainability experts. Fusing her professional expertise as an environmental engineer with the down-to-earth pragmatism that comes from being a busy mum, Laura is an eco thought leader who’s not afraid to challenge the status quo.
Laura

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