Slow is not a redeeming occupational virtue.
Well, I take that back. I would like for my brain surgeon to be slow. And precise.
But my grocery store cashier doesn’t get any bonus points for dawdling. I don’t care if he is friendly. And he was. Friendly and fast is the combination that waiting customers desire.
I was waiting in line and the cashier’s movements were on Prozac. Item out of cart, across the scanner, into bag, repeat. Very slow. The one lady ahead of me gave up in favor of self-checkout. She bet on herself being faster.
I wondered how management saw fit to place this young man on a cash register? He would have been better suited in a position that required friendliness but not speed. Maybe the guy who gathers the shopping carts in the parking lot.
We are all uniquely gifted to excel in certain areas. As Jim Collins, author of Good To Great stated, we may ride on the bus, but we need to be in the right seat.
This is a good thing to remember as a manager of people, but it’s also a valuable insight to our own lives. We’re not good at everything. Other people will be better than us at stuff. That’s fine.
We’re better at other things.
I read something a while back that stated we shouldn’t spend a lot of effort improving our weaknesses, but instead invest time sharpening our God-given skills. Makes sense to me.
If I need home repairs done, I rarely pick up a hammer. My greatest tool is my phone.
I call Arthur who is on speed dial.
And he isn’t slow about helping out a friend.