Triggered by two articles I have read in different blogs, and by a decision I recently had to make, I started to think about the concept of patience and how it influences the way we achieve and perceive progress and innovation. Or, put differently, it influences the way we treat others.
The first article was about the fact, that Facebook hasn’t really “wowed” the author with the late versions of its mobile application. Even though I agree with that, it made me wonder, firstly, why we expect a company that struggles to deliver stable performance on their “stationary” website to somehow magically produce a “wowing” mobile app. And secondly, how our evaluation of adequate developing time seemingly has changed. We expect everything, and we expect it to be conveniently delivered right now for free.
This idea is partly included in the second article, that dealt with the rise of average and mediocre particularly in the smartphone segment (sorry, folks, I can’t find the link anywhere). No more magic, only marginally better copies of the respective predecessors.
I think it is about time to adapt our expectation of quality to the expectation of release dates. There’s a reason for saying like “Haste makes waste” or “Gut Ding will Weile haben”. If we, for what ever reason, want an update every four weeks, we should stop expecting major innovations in those updates. In most cases, great work needs more time than average work. Grant people that time and they might surprise you with more than you expected.
I’m not saying we should lower our expectations. We just should unlearn to expect their immediate satisfaction without being willing to give anything for it.