Doing average work seems a pretty obvious thing to avoid. On the other hand, teams and managers slip into it all the time. We’ve been guilty of it too.
That long-running project on a deeply dull topic for an inattentive customer that’s just drifting along. That stuttering product development initiative that no-one has the courage to kill because everyone’s too burnt out to add another awkward conversation to their to-do list. That piece of code/marketing copy/business analysis that’s just easier to fix at senior level each time rather than digging into the reasons why more junior staff are producing work below the required standard.
These dynamics persist because day-to-day it’s understandable for managers to tolerate mediocre work to focus on more pressing issues. But over time, the impact of doing mediocre work on your team can be disastrous.
John Cutler is the Head of Product Education at Amplitude and in a recent piece on The Mediocrity Trap, he outlined some of the ways mediocrity damages your team, and what you can do about it (we’ve paraphrased and simplified).
So what can you do to stamp it out?
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We’ve compiled a list of questions you can ask your managers and team members to identify the challenges they face, and help you pick the right solutions.