Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Won't Miss #523 - plodding meticulousness

One day, while I was in the post office in Japan to mail a few letters. There were three postal workers and three customers. It took more than 7 minutes per customer because the postal workers moved at glacial speed and paused to check every little detail as they went. One of the customers was filling out a single simple customs form and another was simply buying some stamps. This sort of meticulousness is common in Japan because perfection is valued over efficiency. In fact, it is frequently an issue when U.S. companies set up branches here as the time it takes to complete basic office tasks is unacceptably long and wastes money.

I won't miss wasting time waiting while people slowly go through every niggling detail as if the fate of the world depended on getting it perfect every time.

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