White's Law of Chronological Compression
Published by Bill White , December 30th, 2014
Here we go again. Annual reports, zeroed insurance deductibles, April 15th looming over us like the evil spirit it is. As anyone knows who has presided over a business for more than 30 years, it seems the longer we go, the faster we go.
Allow me to present White’s Law of Chronological Compression. It’s my definition of the perception that things at work are speeding up. This isn’t news. I don’t expect a physics prize in my name to be awarded anytime soon. But this immutable law does suggest that our need to plan, execute, monitor and adjust is not a future event. It’s a here and now event.
Because business and marketing programs rarely unfold when and as planned, change is always the constant. The likelihood of change doesn’t obviate the need for a business vision, an articulated outcome, a mission statement or even a Hail Mary for the next fiscal year. Nor does it sidestep the need for a plan. The trick is to weave the planning process into the fabric of business, yours and ours.
In this age of razor sharp metrics and micro analytics brought forth from digital marketing programs, our need to plan, execute, monitor and adjust is no longer an abstract idea buried in an MBA case history somewhere; it’s a way of life and a measure of performance for any business that expects to survive and make a profit.
And all of this, from the plan to the necessary series of adjustments, is taking place in a cycle so inherently compressed that results of sales and marketing programs are often delivered in hours instead of days or weeks. (Our Ed.it™2 Digital Marketing Platform is ideal for watching some of this in real time.)
In a recent issue of Fast Company, a digtal publication focusing on new media and online pathways to the market, contributing writer Laura Vanderkam splashes some cold water on how we should think about managing our time which, as we know from White’s Law, is the same for all of us – 8,760 hours per year. If we budget 2,000 of these hours for our work as marketers, Laura poses, how should we spend them?
At OffWhite, our job – for you and for ourselves – is to clarify objectives, plan, plan some more, build budgets, allocate resources and delegate what we can. If we don’t do this well and do it now, we’ll be staring at the start of 2016 wondering what happened to the year we’re taking on as we speak.
Think about what you were doing at this time last year. You’ll agree, White’s Law of Chronological Compression is a reality. With proper planning, it’s a law we can live with.
Next time, White’s Law of Floating Perspective. And coming soon, White’s Law of Fauxvibration (that’s the feeling you get when your phone is vibrating in your pocket – except the phone is on your desk).
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