On setting a limit

I like one of the sport shoe commercial tag line, “Nothing is impossible. Impossible is nothing”. The tag line has been few years back though, I’m sure you know or ever heard about it.

First of all, the story I wrote is for sharing purpose which inspired by my own situations.

I’m motivated by the tag line many times but for this time, I need to see the bigger picture of it.

Let’s say that you work on a specific project, your own. For me, I work as web developer in my current office. Sometimes on the other department in your office has lots of projects which due almost in the same time, it was overwhelmed and had a very tight deadline. So, for staff who responsible internally-not dealing with clients-will be assigned to help the project so that deadline can be met. Regardless your initial job scope.

However, though you are assigned “urgent” projects with tight deadline, you will still have your own project deadline. Ha! Interesting huh? Or maybe been this kind of situation before?

So, the main parameters are time and skill.

I believe that everyone of us want to get the best result, right? The stress may come from ourselves like trying to deliver the best result when you have to learn something new within short period of time just to accomplish the project. Or at least that what happened to me.

Then one of my colleague told me,

  1. I need to meet the minimum requirement of the project (I fought a lot with myself to do something not to the very best). It’s important to deliver the result. If there is still time, I can do better, of course not violating the basic procedure given.
  2. If the task is far too complicated than what I can do, do it the simplest way. Although sometimes it’s also a tedious way. Don’t complain, just do it. The more we complain, the more time we waste. 😉
  3. (lastly) Everyone wants the job done, so by doing the first and second point, we will also build the “bridge” between our colleague and us. We “help” them to accomplish their job.

(Oops) I forgot to mention about the phase before that. Communication between us is very important. (You will not be assigned something without telling you beforehand). When they ask you to help them, we should  tell what are our thoughts. What we can do, what we can try to do, or even suggest more realistic deadline (which is not that easy to get :D)

So to wrap up, I tell myself that the tag line is challenging to certain point like made me to give the best I can, but let’s be a realistic instead. We’re not a superman who can do jobs in a flash, nor we have super brain to accomplish the tasks. The limit is not a top limit, but it’s a bottom limit. Once we met it, we can either try to make it better or just mark it as another accomplishment.

Let me know about your story? 🙂

PS: Having a task done is boosting our spirits to do more too 🙂

  • sin

    I got the impression that your limit there is more determined by them instead by you yourself, but perhaps I am wrong 😀

    I agree though, that we are not superman and we can’t finish projects in flash, but I still think that we have to try our best to get the best result that we can within a certain amount of time. So if we feel that we can produce a better product than the minimum requirements, then it’s still better to chase the former.

    That said, in real life, sometimes our forecasts are wrong and sometimes we realize that what we thought we could do, is actually impossible to do and in this case it’s better to stick to the minimum requirements rather than to disappoint customers.

    About the 2nd point that your colleague mentioned, I don’t know why but it sounds like a justification in using many println commands to produce output instead of writing a for loop, but maybe I am also wrong here 😀

  • On a point about the limit you’re right. First limit is about the requirement which is from another party which are quite a strict rules to perform the task.

    Then I tried to elaborate more about setting our own limit, since it’s quite often happened to me. I felt that I can do it in a better way.
    But, I was in a situation where I need to choose to do it that way or tedious way because it was asked – and my friend, obviously, doesn’t want to hear alternative way. They prefer to stick into their comfort zone, do things in a way that familiar for them 🙂 -> that’s for the println too (hehe)
    Yes, I’m totally agree with you that sometimes we are limited by what we are thinking. 🙂 We can do better than we thought.

    (Gee.. I need to practice more to express my thoughts in more systematic way haha)