Perfectionists Kill Progress

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The Credit Union is honored to welcome the Laurel Police Department (Montana) and Festus Police Department (Missouri) into our field of membership. We look forward to serving you and your families. ... See MoreSee Less

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Congratulations! Thank you and stay safe!PRESS RELEASE: Chief Booth is pleased to announce the hiring of the Roanoke Police Department’s newest Deputy Chief, Michael “Mike” Crawley. Deputy Chief joins the Roanoke Police Department after a nearly 25-year tenure with the Salem Police Department, from which he retired at the rank of Chief.

“Deputy Chief Crawley grew up in Roanoke, and he knows this community well,” said Roanoke Chief Scott Booth. “His education, tenure of service, and commitment to public safety speaks for itself. I am confident that he will be a great asset to us and a leader at the Roanoke Police Department.”

“I am truly fortunate to join the ranks amongst the women and men of the Roanoke Police Department,” said Deputy Chief Crawley. “Being able to serve the citizens of the City of Roanoke in this capacity is an honor as it will allow me to give back to those who provided so much to me and my family over the years.”

Deputy Chief Crawley will begin working at RPD in late July of 2024. You can review his bio below:

“Mike Crawley began his law enforcement with the Town of Vinton Police Department in August 1996 graduating from Cardinal Criminal Academy in November the same year. During his time at Vinton Police Department he held the position of Patrol Officer, Detective, and Patrol Sergeant. Crawley left his position with Vinton Police Department and obtained employment with the Salem Police Department in December 1999 as a Patrol Officer.

“Crawley was promoted to the rank of Senior Police Officer and transferred to Salem’s Detective Division in 2004 where he was assigned to the Special Investigation Unit. In 2006, Crawley was transferred to General Investigator where he rose to the rank of Sergeant in that Division.

“He later served as the Services Division Sergeant handling the central supply and support component of the Department. He returned to the Patrol Division in 2014 before being promoted to the rank of Deputy Chief. He was named Salem’s Department Chief on February 1, 2016. After more than eight years as Chief of Police, Crawley retired from the City of Salem June 1, 2024. At the time of his retirement he was an active member of the International Chiefs of Police, Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police, National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers, in addition to Blue Ridge Chiefs of Police.

“A Roanoke City native, Chief Crawley graduated from Patrick Henry High School in 1991 and later attended Virginia Western Community College. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Bluefield College where he majored in Management and a graduate from the prestigious F.B.I. National Academy Class #271. He is also a member of Shiloh Baptist Church.”
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Welcome and thank you! Stay safe!The North Tonawanda Police Department would like to welcome our newest Police Officer Alexander Wagner badge 226. Alexander was sworn in today by Mayor Austin J Tylec and Chief Keith Glass at North Tonawanda City Hall.

Officer Wagner comes to us from the Town of Niagara Police Department. Officer Wagner will be assigned to the Training Division. Congratulations and welcome to our department.

Seen in the photo from left to right are Officer Wagner, Chief Glass, and Mayor Austin J. Tylec.
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Division President Jim Bedinger is honored to be attending the Montana Professional Police Association and Montana Association of Chiefs of Police joint annual conference from June 17-20.

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Great work!! Thank you! Stay safe.🐾 Incredible Teamwork by Harris County Deputies' Organization FOP Lodge 39 and K9 Dudley!🐾

Thanks to the hard work of our brothers and sisters of HCDO Lodge 39, and the incredible skills of K9 Dudley, a lost child was reunited with her family earlier today. Using items belonging to the child, such as pants and a hair band, K9 Dudley led deputies to the intersection of TC Jester and 1960. Deputies later learned that the child had boarded a bus at this intersection and traveled to another location, where she was found safely.

Some heroes wear badges… and on occasion have tails! Fantastic work, HCSO & K9 Dudley!

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Perfectionists Kill Progress

I have a huge admiration for self-disciplined, switched on people who put forth a strong effort every day.  I very much appreciate people who hold themselves and the work they produce to a high standard, especially when that standard exceeds any reasonable expectations that others could place on that person.

I applaud all students who study with a goal of getting an A+ on everything they do.  I am impressed by competitors who compete to win every race every time.

Committing yourself to a pursuit of excellence will serve you well no matter the cause.

A pursuit of perfection may be a different story and, if you consider yourself a perfectionist, I am going to ask you to reconsider whether or not you want to own that title.  First, however, I would like to illustrate what I believe is the difference between a person in pursuit of excellence and a person who is pursuing perfection.

I believe that a pursuit of excellence equals achievement, progress, and leadership.  Conversely, a pursuit of perfection equals delays, hindrance, and stagnation.

There are a few reasons for these contrasts, but let’s start with the concept of each.  Excellence and the perception of it is an inclusive, broadly defined term that most people can easily identify with.  Perfection, however, is a highly subjective, exclusive term that to most people represents an unattainable standard.  In fact, the old adage of “I’m only human” is simply another way of saying that no one is perfect.

Some of the basic fundamentals of goal setting mandate that worthwhile goals must be measurable, attainable, and realistic.  While you may have a slightly different idea of excellence than I do, it will be infinitely easier for us to find common ground in that definition and how we will achieve it than it will be for us to agree on what perfection means and how, if ever, we will achieve it.

It has been my experience that perfectionists use the fact that perfection is out of reach more as an excuse than as a way of defining progress.  Perfectionists tend to miss deadlines because the product of their work isn’t “perfect” at the time the result is needed.  Perfectionists tend to tinker with and often amend the nature of a project or its scope because they cannot achieve a perfect outcome.  Additionally, perfectionists tend to be poor delegators because they believe that no one will do the work as well as they do nor will anyone else be as focused on perfection as they are.

The by-product of a perfectionist, especially when there are multiple perfectionists in an organizational setting, is that progress is slow at best because the focus is on an unrealistic standard for achievement instead of the effort needed to achieve.

Delays and an unwillingness to delegate ultimately will bring progress to a screeching halt.  Not only are things not getting done, no one is learning anything because the perfectionists are too sidetracked chasing a mythical objective.

No matter what your standard is or how you define progress, there are things that you can control and things that you cannot control.  Any coach or manager that is tasked with running any team or business predicated on multiple people subscribing to the same vision and core objectives will tell you that they are much more concerned with the effort than the result.  Why?  Because the players on the team and the employees of the business control the effort while the result is at least partly reliant on others, whether they are a rival team or a clientele.

The pursuit of excellence focuses on the effort and the journey you take to achieve your goals.  The pursuit of perfection focuses on the end result and intrinsically creates obstacles that block your path to get there.

The pro-perfectionists out there will also tell you things like mistakes are unacceptable and that they will not accept anything less than 100% satisfaction from the people they serve.  I respectfully disagree with this as well.  Whether you accept mistakes or not, they are going to happen.  I suggest that you categorize those mistakes in order to better understand them.

For example, if the mistake in question is a simple error in execution, while not desired, it should be easier to understand than, say, a mistake involving a lapse in judgment.

If a teller mistakenly gives you $20 less than you asked for because some new bills stuck together in her drawer, it is a mistake that must be corrected, but it is also easy to understand how it happened.

If, on the other hand, that same teller takes your withdrawal amount from your checking account instead of your savings account as requested and hopes that you won’t notice because there are 10 other people waiting in line and looking impatient, the mistake is unnecessary because it could have been completely avoided had the teller exercised common judgment and basic decision making skills.

As far as the client satisfaction is concerned, well that is about as subjective as the concept of perfection.  If you ask ten people what satisfactory customer service means to them, you are likely to get ten different answers.  Satisfaction, just like perfection, is a moving target and representative of a result that is likely never to be achieved despite the best intentions and highest quality effort.

As a business leader and a sports coach, I can speak from a first-hand perspective on both fronts.  Given the choice between an employee or a player who labels themselves a perfectionist and an employee or player who will maximize their effort every day in an attempt to continue to progress and improve, I will take the person who is committed to the pursuit of excellence every single time.

Besides, nobody is perfect.

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