The Relentless Pursuit of……

“To assure quality- excellence must be an earned word assigned by others to us, not proclaimed by us to ourselves”- Ed Catmul, founder of Pixar
When trying to solicit clientele for our business endeavors we use words such as “excellence” to describe the service that we offer. A “flaw” of mine, and possibly the reason I have yet to find the success level that I seek as a freelancer or as a designer in general is that I am honest; probably too honest when it comes to describing myself and my abilities. I cannot call myself a master of any task if I still struggle to perform that task. I will not describe my service as excellence until I get the accolades of others who are professionals at my craft. I call this a flaw because those others are still not as good as I know I can and will be, yet they will use those words and garner up business and carry the perception of success. Yes, I know that marketing teaches us that we must tell the customer how to feel. If I could tell those lies, then I would have more financial success as well, I’m sure. But I just can’t do it. My focus is on quality, and I hate putting out sub standard work and convincing paying customers that it’s “excellence”. So when I read  the above quote in Ed Catmul’s book, “Creativity Inc”, it resonated with me. This man, who founded this billion dollar company feels the same way that I do. If you’re calling yourself excellent and you’re the only one saying it, then you’re probably not all that excellent. You must earn that word! 
Lexus also had a quote, which was their slogan/tag line for a while that always resonated with me, it was “the relentless pursuit of perfection”. I loved this line!!! It implied that no matter how good we get, we will never stop trying to be better, our pursuit of perfection (though we know perfection is unattainable) is relentless. WOW! They have since taken out the words “of perfection” and the slogan only reads “the relentless pursuit”. That has no where close to the same impact and I don’t understand their logic in the change. To me, those quotes go hand and hand in business. Excellence must be an earned word on our relentless pursuit of perfection. I will earn that title because my pursuit of perfection is definitely relentless. Peace! #iDesignStuff


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