Punctuality in Business

Punctuality.  We expect it from others.  But we’re not always great about following the same standard we expect.  Yet, timeliness is the name of the game when it comes to setting a higher standard for business.  It’s the first impression of trust that we leave with others – showing up on time and being prepared.

But beyond that – does it really matter?  After all – what’s five minutes?

First of all, yes.  It does matter.  We’ll get there in a minute.  But let’s first talk about lost productivity.  Let’s assume that you have a five-day workweek, and you’re late by five minutes every day for a year.  At 52 weeks in a year minus the assumed two weeks for vacation, you’re looking at 250 workdays per year.  If you’re late by five minutes per day, that’s 1250 minutes or rather – 20.8 hours in the year.  That’s a lot of lost productivity.  It’s half of a standard workweek.  If you don’t think that matters, take this blog and your timesheet to your boss to get their input.

With that said, let’s consider the benefits of punctuality.

Trustworthiness.  Nothing matters more than your word, and if you say you’re going to be somewhere at a specific time, your trustworthiness continues to grow in the eyes of your supervisors and peers.

More responsibility.  Because you’ve demonstrated yourself reliable time and again, you automatically put yourself at the front of the line when promotions and opportunities for growth come available. 

Credibility.  Being punctual demonstrates that you are credible in your commitment to the business.  It shows that you care and that you’re willing to plan ahead and be prepared for your responsibilities.  It gives a good face to the business, especially if you are often in front of clients.

Professionalism.  Your professionalism shines brightly above your peers when you consistently demonstrate your ability to be punctual.  Those who are above you, equal to you, or even below you on the ladder look to your example.  Especially those who are equal to you or below you.  As they grow in their career, your example has a positive impact on the overall professionalism of the business.

Respect.  You earn respect when you’re trustworthy – from both your peers, your employees, your supervisors, and your clients.  And respect is priceless.

So being on time isn’t just a matter of being courteous.  It’s a matter of personal excellence, and it only serves to benefit the one and only personal brand of you.