4

The easy move when a problem confronts you is to act right away.

We encourage taking action because it is tangible, and we can check a problem off the list, even if it is not solved. You won’t find many people who will argue with, “I did something about that right away!”

Pausing, hesitating, and downright stalling in the face of a problem?

Well, that comes off as laziness, inattention, or even indifference.

11 Advantages When You Wait Before Acting

wait-right-thereBut there ARE advantages to strategic patience and to not acting right away, such as:

  • Others may resolve the problem because they feel ownership for it
  • The hyper anxiety over the problem could die down
  • You may have time to think of a simple answer
  • Others may supply you with the right answer
  • Someone else could step up to solve it – for the good and bad that involves
  • The problem may be forgotten by tomorrow
  • It may no longer be relevant
  • Circumstances may remove the downsides you face in addressing the problem
  • You could discover that the new situations resulting from the problem are ACTUALLY better than the old one
  • You can develop a solution with a fresher perspective later
  • An unexpected situation may be putting you in a BETTER position than you had previously

I cannot put a specific percentage on the number of times strategic patience will work better than acting right away. But based on my own history and predisposition to pause (which sounds better than “wait”), it is significant. And it seems to be getting higher as peoples’ stress levels lead to more perceived problems and less inclination toward strategic patience.

Strategic Patience – Wait for It

So join me in exercising strategic patience more frequently to give yourself time to see what happens. I’ll wait while you decide. – Mike Brown

 

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Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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4 Responses to “Strategic Patience: 11 Advantages When You Wait Before Acting”

  1. Of course, waiting can turn into procrastination (at least for me). Something to be aware of, IMHO.

    • Mike Brown says:

      Very good point, Stephen. Yet I see so many instances of people wanting to act right away, and then they have to act once or twice more to address the shortcomings from acting too soon. A little procrastination would help some folks!

  2. DavidmSena says:

    I remember an observation during my college years. I was in a computer programming class and they said to be careful fixing bugs. Often times you end up introducing more bugs into the system then you began with. Strategic patience can also be tactical patience. In the Air Force, we had an acronym for this: OBE – Overcome by Events. In other words, it does not matter anymore.