Many processes and organisational controls are set up to minimise failure. They are set up to minimise the number of times a team releases bad software; minimise the number of customer complaints; minimise the server crashes or minimise the failed product launches.
What if instead of trying to minimise failure, your organisation focused on maximising success?
What would it do for your product or consumer offering if instead of trying to minimise the bad software releases, you focused on maximising good ones? What would it do for your organisation if instead of focusing on minimising failed product launches, you focused on maximising good ones?
The problem with focusing on minimising the bad is that it creates roadblocks instead of opportunities. When a conversation starts with the question “do we have a reason to not ship this?” it sets the expectation that not shipping is okay. A focus on bad minimisation discourages risk taking and rewards the status quo.
The easiest way to minimise bad releases is to not release anything at all – so when you incentivise and reward the act of not shipping bad releases, either nothing will get shipped, or what does get shipped will be safe and unremarkable.
There will always be a reason not to ship if you look hard enough. Instead of focusing on trying to find it, try investing that energy into shipping it the best way you know how.