“A good plan violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week.”
-George S. Patton

Dramatic scene on the sky. Vintage fighter plane inbound from su


I love staying in touch with students who go through the entrepreneurship program.  When it comes to work, I do not think there is anything more fulfilling than being around entrepreneurs and their growing companies – especially young ones.  I find the way they view the future inspiring.

The other day I met with one of the most promising recent ISU entrepreneurship program grads.  The topic of the meeting was “what is next?”

We talked about planning.  And how bad it can be for a startup.  He identified an area where he had succumb to planning paralyzation.  He had a plan in the works re: going national which combined implementing mass production and replacing an existing product line.  The problem was it had been in the works for almost a year now.  Mass production and new product lines are a big deal, but he realized he needed to stop planning and start doing – even if it meant his plans might not go perfectly.  Fear can keep us in planning mode.  What if this?  What if that?

Planning and acting.  When balancing the two, a good way is to do just enough planning to act well.  Just enough to decide what you need to learn, what action it will take to learn it – and no more.

By the end of our talk he had come up with an action plan.  Within twenty-four hours he had sent me a note describing the results of some of the actions he was taking.  They were good results. Results he would have never realized if he was still planning.


A takeaway from Entreleadership by Dave Ramsey.


Rhetoricals: Is there anything that you have been planning for awhile now? Is it time to take some action? What assumptions are you making in your plans? Which assumption is the most critical to your plan succeeding? What is the smallest action you can take to learn whether or not that assumption is correct?

Actives: What do you think a good balance between taking action and planning is? Any helpful books, takeaways, stories, lessons learned on the subject?