I’m an elitist: Effort does not equal results
Ian Lurie Dec 22 2011
I got called an elitist a little while back. I was at a social thing—I think normal people call them ‘parties’. I call them ‘opportunities for me to make an ass of myself’. Here’s the conversation:
Other person: My friend got fired last month. Totally unfair.
Me: mmm hmmmm
I was hoping that’d end the discussion without making me sound disinterested.
OP: He worked really hard. Like, 70 hours/week!
Me: How’d he do?
OP: What do you mean?
Me: Was his work really good?
I start getting a sinking feeling I should’ve shut up.
OP: I dunno. I just know he worked like a dog.
Me: Yeah, but if his code sucked…
OP: So what?
Me: Uhm. It’s just, if he worked that hard, that’s great and all, but if he never finished his projects…
OP: What are you, some kind of elitist?
I got a beer at that point and slunk off.
I have a lot of respect for effort. I have more respect for results. You’ll get better results, every time, from a happy, motivated team that does a fantastic job 8 hours/day. If you have a frazzled team that’s trying to muddle through in 12 hours/day, it’s not going to be pretty.
I want the former, not the latter. If that makes me an elitist, I guess, so be it.
More about this tomorrow.
Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent Inc. He's recorded training for Lynda.com, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Forbes.com and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, SIC and ad:Tech. Follow him on Twitter at portentint. He also just published a book about strategy for services businesses: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle. Read More