Manufacturing Excellence – Inspire, Lead, and Succeed with PATIENCE!

“The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it.”
~ Arnold H. Glasgow

Ouch. I have to admit that patience is probably not one of my better virtues. I also tend to expect that everyone will make decisions at the same speed as I do. As I get older though, I more and more can see the value of being patient with my environment and the people around me.

Every person is unique. Every person has his or her own challenges. Every person has a different risk treshold, and every person makes decisions at his or her own speed. If we would be more considerate and patient, we would have better relationships.

Like the chicken on the picture, I want everything to be happening NOW. I want to master everything immediately and I want to be able to do it right away. However, it does not always work that way, and neither should it. Sometimes we get further ahead by practising a little patience rather than paying a high price for making a hasty decision or not allowing sufficient lead-time.

I would be what you would call an “action person” in the 4 different temperament styles. That’s also how I started my business. I just wanted to make it happen – not even knowing what I did not know.

Knowing what I know now, it is of unspeakable value for me to embrace different opinions and to get different perspectives before making a blindfolded decision and before losing ground paddling in the deep end of the water. If we want to build better and more meaningful business relationships, it will require patience – depending on the company, culture or country we are dealing with.

My mom has a favourite Chinese proverb which says: “If you are in a hurry, go slowly.” She told me that she learned over the years how true this is. It is more likely that something unexpected will happen when you rush out of the door. By not paying enough attention to the task at hand, small little accidents can occur.

Could you be accused of something called the “hurry sickness”? Keep in mind that going at a fast pace all the time and demonstrating impatience won’t serve you in the long run.

If you are patient, you are less likely to become upset when the traffic is unexpectedly heavy. It is not something you can change or control anyhow.
If you are patient at home, with your spouse and with your kids, you will certainly experience fewer stressful confrontations.
If you are patient, you will take more time to listen what other people have to say.
If you are patient, you will appear more balanced and relaxed.
If you are patient and don’t look for band aid solutions, you will be more likely to achieve a greater level of excellence.

I am not sure if there are people who are born patient but I certainly know that this is a skill, like so many others, that can be learned. I know that because patience is something I have to practise every single day and slowly I can see progress in the way I approach things.

So, be patient with yourself and be patient with others, and if you manage to do that, you will notice an immediate difference.

Comments

  1. The cartoon is priceless. I’ve seen this cartoon, well not this exact one, but similar ones and I find that as I get older, I too become more patient. The question is why has this happened to me? I’m now a father and certainly infants will test your patience so we need to overcome that period in our lives in order to grow. Then comes the dark ages, 12-18, the teen years. As a parent I’ve learned to be more patient as well. I also look back on my own career and see a similar transition. Starting as a young impatient engineer working on the floor wanting to do it all and learn it all. The world as I saw it was mine for the taking all I needed was the desire to conquer.
    Then in my late 20’s someone special in my life thought it would be a cool idea to make me the engineering manager. OH my! This guy was a lunatic, I’m not certain I really expected to get the job when it became open. As it turns out he became a very important and special mentor in my life. Buried in my connections list here on Linkedin he sits back and watches. I’ve come a long way in my career, and there have been bumps along the way, but patience is really what he was trying to teach me.
    Let the entire story unfold and get to the core of the problem, discover your own expectations first before you try to communicate them to your team. Learn what your team needs and desires. They are different things and a great leader can combine them and develop an effective team that can take on the world if needed and one can accomplish far more as a General with an Army, than a General with only a sword.
    I had a few other fantastic mentors along the way. Now that I’m older, and hopefully wiser (I’m certain my kids might just disagree with that wiser thing) I get great joy out of doing for others the same things that wonderful lunatic did for me oh so many years ago. I’ve also learned that many can become a manager. That is the relatively easy job, leaders on the other hand, they get developed by great mentors, with patience.
    Great article!!!!!! I absolutely agree!!!!!!

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