We want it when we want it, and we want it now. Drive through restaurants, television and music on demand, and online purchases with overnight shipping.
Much of the urgency is often cited as a millennial or generation Z (Gen 9/11, iGen) trait. A characteristic that illustrates a lack of consideration for anything other than, “I get what I want when I want it.”
This is not exclusive to the youngest generations and people from every generation have developed expectations built with urgency in mind.
Should workplace teams consider patience as a guiding team principle?
Value of Patience
Consider that teams often experience a lack of patience when the workload is distributed unequally and only a few team members carry a majority of the load. In these cases, the desired short-term goal is achieved but long-term consequences can, and often do, emerge.
The consequences of an uneven balance of workload can destroy employee motivation when team members compare individual contributions and determine they only want to work as hard as the person who is doing less.
It doesn’t end there.
Patience as a Principle
The person who has fallen behind and had their contribution (or portion of distributed workload) completed by a faster moving employee often doesn’t develop the commitment or buy-in since they are not as connected to the work or project.
No buy-in often means a significantly strained, or worse, a failed project or change effort.
Fast, now, or overnight is certainly desirable, as long as the principle of patience guides the work.
Originally posted on September 13, 2016, last updated on November 18, 2018.
Challenges with working across the generations? Understanding more about patience and respect are exactly why I wrote this book:
Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.