Wednesday 7 December 2016

'Don't let the perfect get in the way of the good... too many people do that'

Brendan McGrath CEO, Gaelectric

Published 05/07/2015 | 02:30

Brendan McGrath, chief executive of Gaelectric
Brendan McGrath, chief executive of Gaelectric

'I'm not somebody that looks back; my focus everyday is what I'm going to do today and what's on the programme looking forward. In fact, I spend very little time reflecting because there's nothing you can do about it. It's done, so why are you wasting time in this space?

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"You pick up the lessons as you go. As soon as you do something, very shortly afterwards, you find out if it's right or wrong. So you just take that lesson. I don't theorise as to what I could have done better.

"I think there are two things that I would say. Don't let the perfect get in the way of the good. It's better to do things rather than sit around trying to get the thing perfect. Too many people do that.

"It's never perfect and it can never be perfect. And if you spend your time trying to make it perfect, you've lost the moment.

"Get a project to a stage where it's good, it'll pass the test and you can make money on it, and then do another project.

"The second thing is that if you're going into business - and I'm not being prescriptive here, because you see people going into business at 18, 19, 20 and being successful - I think having 10 years of experience behind you can save you a lot of pain.

"That's because you've had an opportunity to get some real business-life experience - unless you've been brought up in a business family that was always in that area. In that case, you may have picked things up along the way.

"If you were asking me what's the perfect time to go into business, I would say mid-30s. And the reason for that is you need a lot if energy. Energy is a big component of driving a business. You've come off your sports high and you need to get something else to drive you.

"They'd be the two pointers I would give if I was advising anybody, and I'm not saying I'm right because if you're in the app business, you're probably dead by the time you're 35 in terms of knowing where the market is and all the rest of it.

"I'm just talking generally, that's not a market that I know a lot about, so I'm not going to put down a marker in relation to it.

"So they would be my two things. Get some life experience behind you in business, learn at somebody's expense and have the energy to bring it through. And then, make it good, not perfect."

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