we don’t care what’s behind the scenes

In building a business, creativity, inspiration, learning, motivation by Jay Clouse

There’s an adage in the startup world that says “everything costs 3x as much and takes 3x as long as you think it will.”

It’s one of those things we hear and believe, we intellectualize it, but until you’re in it…you don’t quite understand.

Or feel the pain.

I am deep into a few projects I can’t wait to share with you. In fact, I’ve been excited to share them with you for months now.

And just as soon as I think I’m at the end!…I realize that the minor details are actually their own wasp nest of other minor details.

And what I thought would take a couple days takes more than a week.

Suddenly, I’m doing the same tedious task for an entire work day just to make sure things look right. That they look good. Counting how many extra button clicks are involved because this software tool’s UI makes this little piece inconvenient…

But of course you don’t care about that.

And I don’t blame you — I wouldn’t care about it either!

Most of the real work happens behind the scenes. And behind the scenes is always messier, more complicated, and much more boring than we expected.

It takes 3x longer and costs 3x as much as we expected, too.

And so when we are close to the finish line — we are tempted to rush. To finish it up the final elements that our clients, customers, or users will see and get it in front of them.

But this is the trap.

In reality, all that truly matters is how the thing works, looks, and feels to the end user or consumer.

To us.

Because we don’t really care to know what happened behind the scenes to make it. We don’t care if it took a ton of tedious mouse clicks.

We only care that it does something for us. That it helps us, or entertains us.

So you better take extra care to make sure that it does help us. That it does entertain us.

You better take extra care with the aspects that are seen and experienced in front of the scenes. Because if you don’t, all that work and struggle behind the scenes didn’t matter.

And that sure would be a shame!


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