The Good/Great Chasm

The underpinning of Seth Godin’s the Dip is to not get caught doing more than you need to for a task/skill if you’re only working to “good” level but less than you need to if you really want to function at the “great level.  You’re losing being active but not making progress.

In a recent blog post,  he revisited the Good/Great Chasm:l

You can be good at Twitter in about five minutes a day. Spending ten minutes doesn’t make you twice as good… in fact, there’s probably little measurable improvement. To be great at Twitter might take five hours of daily effort.

All the time in between five minutes and five hours is wasted. You’re in a chasm with no measurable benefits.

We see the same thing happen with your Yellow Pages ads or your customer service. Showing up takes some effort and it often pays off. Showing up a bunch more is often worthless. If you want to truly be great, you’re going to have to do things most people couldn’t imagine. That’s what makes it great, after all. The scarcity of it.

A lot of us are in the Good/Great Chasm but don’t realize it.  It only took five minutes to get to Good and because we don’t know that to get to Great will take five hours, we blindly are plugging away with 15, 30 or 60 minutes of effort.