It comes down to intent.

Iterative Approach

Wharton Professor Len Lodish suggests that "It is better to be vaguely right than precisely wrong".  That leads to an iterative approach in which you get close to what you're looking for the first time and iterate in until you get more precisely right.  If you intend to take an iterative approach, each iteration is more satisfying.


On the other hand, if someone asks me to do something, I do it, and then they ask me to do it again, that is often a huge dissatisfier.  I hate re-work and wish people would clarify their own thinking before they ask me to do something.  If you intend to do something once, right and are told to re-do it, each re-do is less satisfying.


Iterations and re-work show up in onboarding.  New employees can't learn everything in one conversation with one person.  They need to have an iterative set of conversations with different stakeholders.  Those iterations can be ever more satisfying as the employee learns more and more.  But re-doing paperwork is almost never satisfying.  So, whether you are the new employee or helping the new employee, be clear when you intend to iterate so others don't mistake it for re-work.

(Image by Jim Moran via Flickr)

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