Worth Doing Well

In primary and secondary school, I would sit down at the table with my all homework hoping to make it through the night. Up until 10th grade, my parents would check my homework to ensure it was good to go. Typically, they would approve and I would be off. But every so often, I would hear the words, "Do it over."

Upset and tired, I would re-write the entire assignment. I just remember after a while having an attitude with my parents (a horrible habit I had as a teenager) about doing EVERYTHING over ALL the time! My father would then quote (over and over) the old saying, "Whatever is worth doing is worth doing well." I envy my father. He's a better go-getter, more extroverted, and much shorter (okay, maybe I don't envy that). See, in my mind, I made the product. My dad, however, saw my neglect for the packaging—the pink eraser marks, the bumpy Wite Out corrections, the left-handed pencil and ink smudges. All of that. It was around my second year as a visual arts major that I would fully realize the weight of his challenge to me.

Whenever we provide a service or perform a task for people and do it WELL from top to bottom, it's not just for our reputation. It's also a gesture conveying value of the other party and their time. It says, "I want you to have a good experience because I care about what I do." With intentional and purposeful presentation, we step outside of ourselves. And that's why, to me, presentation really matters. There's nothing wrong with presentation that's functional. It does get the job done.

But, in my experience, satisfactory is a drive-thru snack. Exceptionality is a home-cooked meal. And no one ever cries in nostalgia, "Gosh, I wish I had my mom's McDonald's right now!"