Being ON TIME. Is it difficult ?

We are all busy at some point throughout our entire lives. We are in fact behaving like sharks who need to keep moving to prevent themselves from drowning. At dawn we rise and put our wheels on and from then on we are on the roll till dusk, at which point we crash in our beds exhausted. Time to recharge. To keep track of all the activities throughout the day and night we use time as a reference. Since it is an universally accepted metric, all of us use it both in business and personal situations. But how many of us heed to it and respect it?  Sadly the statistics point it to be dismal.

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Respecting the clock is tied to punctuality. Imagine going for a very important International company meeting and we are late. Everyone else have arrived at the venue. We enter the building  nervously but quietly to avoid anyone seeing us. We then proceed to the giant hall. Everyone is seated in the dark and is paying complete attention to the presentation that is being presented to them. All eyes are glued onto the screen. We open the door slowly but there is a loud screeching noise from the door hinge. Everyone turns in our direction. The presentation halts for a moment and then resumes. Our heart beats faster and sweat is pouring  from our forehead. At the end of the meeting we are summoned to meet with the President of the organization. We are now embarrassed to be in this situation and are hoping for the best but fearing the worst. In the end we were pardoned this time. The point here is to be on time. Being on time will help us avoid issues of anxiety and stress. We may not have to rush or drive fast, putting ourselves and others in danger. All we have to do to be on time is to start an hour early. It’s that simple.

Being on time may be a habit that gets addictive as time passes. But we need to give it a chance. No one likes a person who comes in late or worse someone who never shows up for a pre-planned appointment. Time is important for everyone. Not showing up for a meeting or coming in late is a sign of disrespect for the person. Being on time tells us that the person is punctual, committed, trustworthy and reliable. On the other hand someone who is late may be branded to be unreliable and one who cannot be trusted. Being on time shows the respect for oneself and to the other person. This respect is mutual. If we both have fixed a date and a time to meet at a particular venue and I do not show up. How would that make you feel? I am sure you would be angry and decide not to do business with me. Likewise, it is applicable both ways.

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Imagine taking a flight or a train and we are late. We are sure to miss it. People on that plane or train have their own agendas to be somewhere and they have planned accordingly to be on time and to be on that plane or train. So that plane or train will leave with or without us. Also we would be getting no refund. The World does not stop for us. We live in a very dynamic society where time is of the essence. It is our job to be on time if we wish to move ahead in life. The first impression is always the best. We get only one shot to make a first impression and there is only one first impression in our lifetime. So let’s not blow it. Arriving late for a game, a graduation or a wedding becomes completely meaningless. Once it is done, it’s done. Say we have an appointment with our Doctor at 1 pm. We arrive in the office at 2.30 pm and wish to be seen immediately. Meanwhile there are many patients waiting for the doctor in the waiting room. Do we think that the doctor is going to be happy with this situation and will be be expecting him to come and Welcome us into his office with open arms while other patients are waiting to be seen. Of course not? At this point we have two choices, either we reschedule for another day or wait our turn until all the patients are seen. On the other side, if we do not show up entirely, the doctor is definitely not going to be happy. Because it is his or her loss of time and his or her livelihood. So we should learn to respect others time and others should be respecting our time. It’s completely mutual. If we learn to respect each others time, keeping time may get much easier for all of us and we may not have to keep ANYONE WAITING.

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Respecting the clock, respecting ourselves and respecting other’s time are all very important in conducting business today as it has always been. If we are late to a business meeting, someone else might snatch our business prospects from us and they would be very happy to do so right from under our noses, while we are still standing there in shock. Time is much more valuable than money. We can always make money but we cannot make time. So we need to respect time by respecting the clock. It may pay us manyfold in dividends. It’s also a matter of principle.


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