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This article was published on August 31, 2011

    The small changes that make a big difference

    The small changes that make a big difference
    Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten
    Story by

    Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten

    Founder & board member, TNW

    Boris is a serial entrepreneur who founded not only TNW, but also V3 Redirect Services (sold), HubHop Wireless Internet Provider (sold), and Boris is a serial entrepreneur who founded not only TNW, but also V3 Redirect Services (sold), HubHop Wireless Internet Provider (sold), and pr.co. Boris is very active on Twitter as @Boris and Instagram: @Boris.

    As an entrepreneur you are often trying to focus on the Big Picture. And that is good. But it is also good to realize that big changes can often come from just of little adjustments. I love this quote from Marian Wright Edelman:

    We must not, in trying to think about how we can make a big difference, ignore the small daily differences we can make which, over time, add up to big differences that we often cannot foresee.

    A few years ago I was working on TwitterCounter.com in a dark office, late at night, when one of my neighbors, from another company, strolled by and asked what I was doing up so late.

    I showed him the screen and explained that I was adding a 16×16 icon to a title somewhere and that I couldn’t get the alignment right. He was very surprised that I was spending time on this and told me “Why the hell would you obsess about such details? Don’t you have people to do that for you?”

    I felt embarrassed and didn’t really know what to say. It didn’t even occur to me to ask someone else to do this and for a moment thought whether I should be stopping what I was doing and focus more on the bigger picture.

    Of course I didn’t and I still spend a lot of time on small things. The big picture is made up of lots of little pixels, details or even smaller images. It is just fine to make sure each of those images, or pixels, is as close to perfect as possible.

    So go ahead and sweat the small stuff. They all add up to a make a big difference in ways we cannot foresee.

    Photo credit: Leigh Prather via Shutterstock.