Lockdown has changed us in many ways, apparently some we don’t even realize. A new example recently came up during the weekly supermarket shop.
Converting to online
Online delivery has really taken off over the last few years. Stuck at home, locked down, it has been a lifeline for many folks, reducing the risk from contact for customers and employees alike. However, despite these initial drivers, many of us have also found it, well, just really convenient.
Now I have always been a user of online, preferably mobile app, shopping. Travelling quite a bit for work in the old days, many was the time, when I would be shopping (normally on the 18:40 from Manchester). It added extra hours to the day to get stuff done.
However, at the time, shopping for milk, eggs, flour, butter, baking powder, sugar, blueberries and maple syrup never really crossed my mind. (Blueberry pancakes btw, if you are culinary-minded!).
Supermarket shopping was always something I loved to do. Yes, getting there was a chore, but once there it presented me with a shop full of combinations and possibilities. Not something I thoughts of giving up until I had to.
But now I have, what a time saver… click, click, click and it is done.
How things have changed
And, this brings me on to what I noticed has changed. Yes, online shopping has been great, but what struck me, is how this has also changed our expectations and perceptions of time too.
Only last week I was in the middle of something, the doorbell went and the supermarket shop had arrived.
My reaction, not “how convenient, this saves me so much time”, but more “sigh, the supermarket is here, I have to put it all away”…
I mean listen to it… I now get the food, selected for me, packed up and actually delivered to the front door… probably saving me 2 hours in my week and I am still grumpy about it… what do I need next? Do I need the food actually put in the cupboards, have it cooked for me… seriously what gives! Are we all getting lazy?
Actually, I think it all comes down to our ever-changing expectations. As our world accelerates and becomes more convenient, so the bar of expectations raises too.
Back at the office we have also been through massive changes too.
Remote working, use of video calls, file sharing, instant collaboration across borders, the world has become a more online, instant and smaller place. There is no doubt this has been great and saved us a huge amount of time too.
However, has this also changed our perceptions of time too? Are we more grumpy about the lack of instant response to our messages, slowness in making decisions, speed in booking meetings or having the technology not working perfectly when you jump from one meeting to the next? Okay I admit it, maybe I am, sometimes!
Quick, quick, slow
More and more as things open up, we are going to be back out and about again. It will be part wonderful and part stressful especially the later if we don’t reign in our expectations a little I fear…. if you have ever tried joining a conference call on the train, you already know that a video teams call is just not going to work!
And, sometimes, things just take time. Time allows events to pass, ideas to percolate and even thinking to happen. Just like making dinner, sometimes if you want something great it cannot be rushed…
We just need to be conscious of our behaviour, taking it fast when needed, but also respecting our (and each others) time when it can add more value.
As I get out and about, it will be something to reflect on… likely looking out of the window on the train… in between online shopping on course!
Have a good weekend everyone.