Friday, July 15, 2016

Being Late Means You're Smarter??? What The?

According to the Business Insider,

"People who always run late are more successful and creative".

The article further goes on to state that in Western cultures, showing up late is seen as disrespectful and unprofessional, when in fact, it's not. Instead, the person who repeatedly keeps everyone waiting, sees the world differently that those who manage to show up on time.
The article gives further explanations for this behavior based on unnamed studies from the 1950's that claims people perceive time differently. Those that are on time, judge 60 seconds as 58 seconds. Whereas, people that run late, judge 60 seconds as 77 seconds. 
The article then extrapolates that the personalities that are routinely late tend to be more creative and relaxed, while the on-timers tend to be more competitive and impatient.

My take.
Are you kidding me?
I can't tell you how offensive I find this article, as well as the "conclusions" it has drawn.
Typically, I am someone who is on time. It's not necessarily in my nature, but it is something that I work at. If this means adjusting my departure time so that I arrive at an appointment on time, I do that. If this means I inconvenience myself in order to be respectful of another person's time, I do it.

Yes, we all know people who are routinely late. Should they be vilified? 
Of course not. 
But make no mistake, it is rude to be late to a pre-assigned meeting. It is unprofessional to keep others waiting. How can anyone argue that?
We can all come up with excuses - and many are valid: traffic, closed roads that affected travel time, minor emergencies, etc, etc. However, the person (and you know who you are) who is routinely late for meetings, dinners, and other arrangements KNOWS that they are causing other people to wait for them. And they accept that. They may even justify that it's not a big deal, and others relish in their ability to be the center of attention and dictate terms.

Let me tell you what you have done. You have made it so the people you are meeting either can not start the meeting/activity without you or they have to do all the work. This means that if you are meeting someone for lunch, they have to wait for a table, or wait at a table, for you. Your counterparts, who have made your meeting a priority and arrived on time, are being told by your lateness that their time is unimportant and in essence, that they are unimportant.

I heard a psychologist describe the person who is always late as the one who holds the power. 
It is a power trip. People who are regularly late do not like to hear that. They think it's not a big deal.
My question, sincerely, is this. If you are late routinely, would you like to be treated this way?

1 comment:

Bonnie B. says said...

I don't buy the premise of the article either. Whenever I'm running late I ask myself why am I doing it and what is it about the situation/event that I'm not happy about and then I get my butt in gear and minimize or eliminate the lateness.