Yesterday, Ben Casnocha blogged about the Best vs. Better debate. Here’s an excerpt, but I recommend you to read the full post.
“I’m more interested in helping 7’s become 8’s than helping 3’s become 6’s. I’d rather have a smaller impact on a very talented person than help an illiterate person learn how to read. The self-interested explanation for this is that it’s more stimulating to me to work with someone who’s talented. The altruistic explanation is that some gifted people will use their gifts to help all of mankind.”
Personally, I’m with Ben, but I’m not saying it’s the right choice. Probably neither is. The world needs both kinds of people.
So, which are you?
Do you prefer to make good what’s bad? Or to make great what’s good?
- If you work for a non-profit or travel abroad to help people in need, you’ll be (or should) at peace with yourself, but the impact and satisfaction you’ll have it’s very small compared to the amount of work left to do.
- If you dedicate your life to fulfil your intellectual hunger, surround yourself with brilliant people and work towards ambitious personal goals, you’ll have privileged achievements. But what will be your impact on the world and people’s lives? (The altruistic explanation doesn’t satisfy me).
Balance is important, but one ultimately leans towards one.
When you do, make sure you understand what you’re getting into, because the pay offs are substantially different.