It took a moment for the meaning of that phrase to sink in when I first heard it. I must have had a puzzled look on my face. “Ain’t no better than ‘works’”, he repeated. “Robert” explained that it was an expression from his home state, Mississippi.
I’m sure his words were meant to be proverbial – a truth made simple – yet every cell in my body resisted his “wisdom”. The context was that given the minimum system requirements, professional editing software would work; and it doesn’t get any better than that. I immediately thought, “of course it gets better than that!”
To be fair, let’s put ourselves in the shoes of teenagers in the rural South. We are rebuilding an old clunker with our friends - our sole chance to see the Saturday matinee – and the thing actual starts. We’d be proud of ourselves and pretty darn excited to say the least.
It seems many entrepreneurs approach technology in this same manner. In the exuberance of starting a new business, they run to the Apple Store or Best Buy, and purchase whatever the sales personnel recommend. And it “works” (as far as they can tell). “Don’t fix what ain’t broke!”
Yes, admittedly, a clunker will get you from point “A” to point “B” (much of the time). But you would risk your life if you were to take it on the highway and you certainly could not depend on it to get you to a job every day.
In a business setting, “Ain’t no better than ‘works’” is a dangerous LIE.
We are professionals; we have higher standards. Our teams depend on us. Our clients depend on us. Our loved ones depend on us to do a great job for our clients. We need to have higher expectations for our technology, too.
Technology that “works” isn’t good enough. We need “dependable”. We need “robust”. We need “high-performance”. We need “agile”. We need “secure”. We shouldn’t stake our businesses on “works”.
Our teams, and ultimately our clients, deserve better than a jalopy. They need a high-performance, well-maintained SUV, with a spare tire, a jack, an emergency kit and AAA road service.
Business isn’t a joy ride. It’s a race where only finishers win.