There are seemingly never enough hours in a day, and as a result we constantly move as quickly as possible to get more done. Yet, the old saying "haste makes waste" often stands true. Despite the pressure to move fast, being deliberate can result in you moving even faster. Yes, you can go slow to go even faster. The reason is that critical missteps are more commonplace at speed. Here are five advantages you can gain by taking a deliberate (yet urgent) approach:
- Fewer mistakes. When you take the time to examine something carefully you will reduce errors. Even something as standard as writing this blog post will be better if I take the time to read it slowly to find typos.
- Eliminate wasted activity. When you move too quickly sometimes you need to backtrack or even start over. We've all been in fire drill meetings only to have to regroup again because someone was missing and needed to be caught up.
- Generate new ideas. With time comes contemplation and the possibility of coming up with new ideas. And the next new idea could be huge!
- Seek alternative views. No matter how good an idea, more times than not it can be improved though seeking different views. If you move too fast you will have no opportunity to do this and may miss critical refinements.
- Inform others. Most efforts involve change, which we know people resist. When you take the time to educate others you are able to bring them along with the change instead of forcing it on them.
Neural research has shown that our brain processes information differently depending on if a fast or slow decision is needed. Bear in mind, though, that there is no perfect decision making approach. Sometimes speed matters the most, but not always. Decision-making is situational and it's important to know that fast is not always better.