Leonardo’s Perfection Problem

Leonardo DaVinci

In Monday’s email, I recommended the new biography Leonardo DaVinci (by Walter Isaacson).

Great read. Lots of interesting stories. Many business lessons. 

Here’s one: 

In 1480, monks hired Leo to create a painting of the Adoration of the Magi.

Leo started the project, but he stopped before finishing.

Leo imagined the perfect painting, but he couldn’t achieve that perfection.

So he abandoned the unfinished work (Leo had lots of unfinished works).

The monks canned Leo and gave the job to Filippino Lippi.

Art historians say Lippi’s Adoration is way worse than Leo’s… except…

…it’s finished.

Leo was the better painter. But Lippi met deadlines, delivered the goods, and cashed in.

Today, we call Leo a genius and gawk at his works in museums.

But back in the day, Leo was just another starving artist who sucked at running his business.

The bottom line: Leonardo DaVinci had a perfection problem.

Do you have a perfection problem?

Action drives business. Inaction kills it.

Remember that the next time you’re thinking, “I can’t launch an email campaign because I’m not a good enough writer.”

(You’re good enough, or you can hire someone who is good enough.)

Think of Lippi cashing in the next time you re-edit content, over and over again, because it’s “not quite right.”

(It’s right enough or you can hire someone who can quickly make it right enough.)

If you wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and wait…

…until your stuff is practically perfect, you choose inaction over action.

Then, like Leonardo, you will have a perfection problem that becomes a business problem.

Don't go away yet..

p.s. Coaches, authors, and consultants hire me to power-up their creative content and storytelling to captivate prospects, stand-out and book more business.

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Tom Ruwitch

Tom Ruwitch is the founder and CEO of Story Power Marketing. For more than 30 years, he has helped businesses grow by delivering powerful stories using a variety of different media.

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