Miller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.
Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between
Toronto – October 21, 2013
We are always talking about being more efficient. At work. At home. At school. Efficiency and productivity are words that we throw around often. When we try to be more efficient we look at less labour intensive ways of doing things. We email instead of picking up the phone. We pick up the phone instead of making an in-person visit. We send automated messages instead of responding to someone. We skim the article instead of reading the whole thing. We plan our errands around stores that are located close to each other.
But I often wonder if our pursuit of efficiency sabotages our ability to be effective. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it does. The world is so fast-paced that we are always looking for short cuts. These short cuts makes us more efficient, but not necessarily more effective.
How many times have you sent an email which led to a long trail of emails and a great deal of time spent, when a quick phone call would have resolved the issue? How often have you misinterpreted the tone of someone else’s written communication? What about not communicating at all because you believe it’s not worth the effort? How many opportunities have you lost because you have been pursuing efficiency and speed, not effectiveness?
I always tell my clients that they are better off focusing on a smaller number of good prospects and customers than treating every potential customer as equal. This is the perspective we need for every aspect of our lives. Efficiency doesn’t mean that you are doing what is right, it just means that you are able to do whatever you’re doing faster.
Are you pursuing efficiency at the expense of effectiveness?
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