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Why is there never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to do it over?


Uh oh. I just realized that if I don’t hurry up, I might take more than ten minutes to think things through. Don’t stop. Not even for a minute. To contemplate an answer. To put a thought together. Then what? Will Katherine Waddell Consulting get a reputation for moving too slowly?

According to Advertising Age, I might. “For years now, the ad business, particularly agencies not branded “digital” has received a bad rap for being sluggish and not moving at the pace of technological change,” stated a recent article. The same article cites the formation of The World’s Fastest Agency, set up entirely on Twitter and turning around briefs in a matter of hours for $999.

Ouch.

Are the best ideas really generated in a matter of hours? Sure, marketers are racing to keep up with consumers. That leaves little time for testing, and even less time to be proactive. Even new business pitches are getting faster.

Where we once had an opportunity to get to know a client and learn his business, now the pressure to be reactive leads little time to question and probe.

That begs the question: Does time lead to quality?

I’d argue in most cases, yes. It doesn’t matter who you are, how many degrees you have, or how long you’ve been in business — it’s difficult to pay attention to detail, think in advance, and cover our bases when you’re racing the clock. Is it impossible to do a good job in a short amount of time? Nothing is impossible, but I can’t help but think of the old adage: Why is there never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to do it over?

Me — I’d rather get it right the first time around.

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