What is Your Minimum Time to WOW?

I have noticed that as I get older, and hopefully wiser, time seems to move much faster. As a child, I remember sitting in a classroom staring at one of those huge industrial clocks guarding the doorway like a prison guard. I could almost hear the sound of the second hand as it ticked from second-to-second. Some days seemed so long I wondered if I would survive to see the top of the hour. Would I make it to lunch? And forget about the end of the school day; that would never arrive.

These days, I wake up on a Sunday morning, look at my children, and wonder where last year went. While there is no question I have grown older, I am convinced that time moves faster today than it did yesterday, last month, or last year.

I’m no physicist, but experience tells me that Einstein was right; the speed of light is constant, but time can change relative to the speed one is traveling. In today’s world, things are moving very quickly. Between the Internet, social media, the 24-hour news cycle, augmented and virtual reality, and the mobile supercomputers we all carry in our pockets, it feels like tomorrow is always much closer than it used to be.

Setting aside my nostalgia, I have begun to wonder how to articulate a strategy to allow each of us to benefit from this phenomenon of accelerating time.

What’s your “Minimum Time To WOW (MT2W)”?

The concept behind MT2W is simple… No matter what you are doing, what is the shortest possible path to that WOW moment? It is important to understand that WOW is not a synonym for perfect or complete. A WOW moment is best described as a feeling or state-of-mind; you know it when you “see it” or “feel it.” While there is no hard and fast rule, if it takes more than one week to get to a WOW, you probably need to look closer at what you are doing to see it can be broken down into smaller components or steps. Remember: The primary reason for MT2W is to drive ideas forward quickly.

I believe that WOWs can be singular moments, but can also be additive — many WOWs can combine to make one big WOW — and WOWs can also be transitive, each leading to the next.

Why do we need MT2W?

In business, an appreciation for MT2W is powerful because it empowers and encourages each of us to get moving and take risks. We need to embrace MT2W because it is complementary to the Instagram — SnapChat — Twitter — news flash — sound bite world in which we find ourselves. WOW moments are not only productive, but are self-fulfilling; one WOW usually leads to the next.

To twist Machiavelli, I would contend that a chain of WOWs (the means) will predictably yield a positive result (the end). From this perspective, the means will justify the end. I like to think of WOW moments as the periodic tastings a chef performs while cooking a meal. If everything tastes good along the way, it is unlikely the meal will be anything less than delicious when it reaches the table.

The next task or project you are doing, ask yourself, “What is my MT2W?” I talk about Outcomes-Based Thinking a little bit more in this ebook

About the author:

Tal Golan (@TalGolan) is the Chief Strategy Officer at VERB.