In today’s fast-paced world, you would think that prioritizing speed over price and quality is a recipe for disaster. However, this is not always the case. In fact, prioritizing speed can ultimately save you more in the long run. Here’s how:
Speed: Time is money
The saying “time is money” is not just a cliche; it’s a fact. When you prioritize speed, you are saving time, which equates to money. The longer a project takes, the more resources you’ll need to invest in it: design, approvals, re-work, etc.. By prioritizing speed, you can minimize the amount of time and resources you’ll need to complete a project.
Faster feedback loops
When you focus on speed, you can quickly identify and address any issues that arise, have concrete information for the next iteration, and collect real-world data. This allows you to make changes and improvements quickly, get back into the next round of iteration, and get one step closer to the final goal. Like best selling business author Jim Collins puts it, “Fire bullets, then cannonballs.” This means not loading up on a single gamble then spending all your energy on that one shot. Instead, test first, make adjustments, test again until you get the ideal result, then unload all you’ve got on it.
Being open and flexible
Of course, projects rarely end up the way it’s initially outlined. Think about remodeling a house – how many times have you experienced or heard that the buildout went exactly to plan? Not a lot, so you might as well embrace it! That means being open and flexible in your approach and mindset for the unpredictable journey ahead is also very important.
One way to achieve faster results is by being open to different materials and techniques. With the right mix, it’s possible to achieve the same or even a better outcome than another option, in less time. For example, if you’re building an acrylic point of purchase display fixture, the early prototypes may take too long for custom tooling. Instead, substitute a material like FalconBoard for the first go-around with CNC routing to prove the concept first.
Avoiding paralysis by analysis
This is a big one. As Christopher Ingraham of the Washington Post wrote in his April 2021 article, “Humans solve problems by adding complexity, even when it’s against our best interests,” we innately complicate things. Factor in the easily accessible information we have at our fingertips today, and it’s a recipe for an endless loop of re-thinking and inaction. By prioritizing speed, you can avoid getting bogged down in the details and instead focus on getting things done. It’s also a work around so you can avoid reaction tendencies.
Recognize the human
Prioritizing speed over price and quality can maximize your time, create more opportunities, gain competitive advantage, benefit from faster feedback loops, and avoid analysis paralysis. Understand your natural tendencies to navigate projects thoughtfully – if you’re in control of them, you’ll be able to navigate anything. So, the next time you’re faced with a project, consider prioritizing speed as a viable option.
Jeff Lo is owner of TGS Elevate, a visual marketing / merchandising company that provides printing, point of purchase displays, and store fixture manufacturing, and in-store build outs for companies that have 50-500 locations nationwide.