How many projects have you worked on where something didn't work as planned?

You didn't have a big enough budget?

An important commitment or detail fell through?

You didn't have all the resources you thought you would have before the project started?

If so, you have probably described attributes of roughly 99% of projects that have ever been worked on. Very few things go perfectly.

That's not to say that imperfect things can't be successful. 

Success isn't totally dependent on everything going perfectly. How we respond to adversity does. We all have constraints to work with when we tackle new work. When we face those constraints, we have the option to blame those constraints or to make the most of what you have. 

I had one project in the last couple of years that looked amazing up front. We had big dreams and nearly equally big promises by others touching that project. However, things kept coming up. Deadlines kept getting pushed back. Partners who were "guaranteed" to be involved all of a sudden were not. Promised assets fell short. There were days that it felt like more was going wrong than going right. 

What went right? The attitudes of the team. Nobody ever threw the towel in on the project. Everyone did everything they could with the resources we had available. 

And you know what? Once we created the recap report, we found that we actually had a successful project. Everything turned out well. If you didn't know what it could have been like we did, you wouldn't know that we faced any roadblocks at all. Nobody made excuses and everything turned out okay. 

So the next time something doesn't go right, don't throw in the towel. Do everything you can with what you have (even if you don't have much). Less-than-ideal situations inspire awesome solutions.

No excuses. Play like a champion.