You may have the best of intentions on arriving on time.
You make an effort to prepare ahead of time.
You may even trick yourself by scheduling the appointment a few minutes early in your phone...but soon you find yourself running late.
You can tell when it's coming...took too long to pick out your clothes and get dressed, stayed on the phone too long, children required more time, had to stop for gas…urgh!
However it happens, you can feel it coming. Once the realization that you will be late sets in, the rushing starts...and right behind it irritability, negative self talk and maybe a few excuses.
Well, I say we end all that today!!
You and your clients/colleagues deserve better. A part of taking good care of yourself and others is eliminating chronic lateness from your everyday life.
See, lateness sends a powerful message. When people are late, it says something about...
It may not even be that these things are true, but we all develop ideas about who someone is based on lateness.
Believe it or not, that one thing alone can make or break someone's perspective on who you are. You can be skilled, capable and kind; but lateness will have potential clients, referral sources and others seeing you differently. It matters!!
Lateness can sabotage trust at a subconscious level. It radiates unreliability and it has consequences for you and your clients.
From frazzled to magical
When we show up late, we really do ourselves a disservice. Instead of feeling confident...we feel frazzled. Instead of time to prepare...its time for explanations.
Have you ever arrived very early to a meeting? Arriving 15 minutes early instead of five minutes late can really be game changer.
Being early is magical. It's like a few moments of bonus time. Time you can spend thinking through what you want to say or do in the meeting, centering yourself or even being productive with checking emails or returning a call. It then becomes "your time", that you control and can do with it whatever you please. I do some of my best thinking in the quiet moments before a meeting begins.
It feels great...you feel on top of things, ahead of the game and ready for what is to come. When you are the first one there, you set the tone and welcome others as they arrive.
Impact on others
Let's really consider the impact that lateness has on other people. The inconvenience, the annoyance, the frustration. Having to manage those feelings can really put people in an awkward place...especially if they really enjoy you. Now they have to integrate these feelings into the positive experiences that are having with you.
Make it easy for your clients and colleagues to develop a positive rapport with you. Give them the best of what you have to offer. Show up consistent and professional...as someone they can count on.
The good news is ...Late is not a character trait. It is a pattern and it can be changed. As a matter of fact, next week, I’ll be sharing a few things you can do to make being on time something that you are known for.