Shipping Is Important

In my line of work it’s very easy to have projects that just kind of float in my brain.  I might tweak a project every once and awhile and feel like I’m making progress.  But I know a simple truth and I think you know this too.  If the project doesn’t have a due date, I (and so will you) will put it off as long as possible.

Seth Godin’s Linchpin talks a lot about the value of shipping.  Set a due date or a ship date, work on the project, and send it out on the ship date.  It might not be perfect, it might need to come back for revision, you might have to update the project later.  All of that doesn’t matter.  What matters is getting in the habit of shipping.

No one knows about your ideas.  No one cares about your ideas.  No one knows or cares until you ship.  Make something happen.  Don’t wait for other people to fill up your life with their projects and deadlines.  Carve out some time for your projects and ideas.  And ship them.  This could be self initiated projects for work, or it could be a hobby that you want to share with others (music, writing, photography, etc.).  Whatever it is Ship It!

I just shipped a project to some volunteers in our community.  I need them to be involved and I told them that I would have their parts to them this week.  No one told me that I had to get volunteers.  No one told me that I had to write this project. No one told me that I had to get people on board early.  But I know myself and if I didn’t give myself due dates for this stuff then I would not produce quality.

So what is your project?  What is the thing you are putting off?  What will it take for you to put a ship date on it? And then what do you have to do to ship?

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