While there are plenty of books, articles, speeches, and blog posts about how the speed of business is faster than ever, it’s important to understand the speed of your business.

Having experienced working in retail, SaaS, fashion, manufacturing, and construction I have seen how different the speed at which each of these operates. Each of them would tell you it’s faster than ever for them, but if you compare them against each other you’ll find striking differences.

All clients want it yesterday but will accept different results depending on the competitive nature of the industries and time it takes to create the end product.

This is helpful to understand ahead of time if you’re changing industries. You may find yourself being pulled (not good) or being the one pushing (do it tactfully).

Navigating this by asking questions such as the following can help you understand the baseline for your organization.

  • What is our typical turnaround time?
  • Is this a typical client request?
  • What would it take to do this faster?
  • Can this wait?

You want to be prepared to dig into the data itself or require that others bring data to back up their answers. Without it you’ll get more anecdote than truth. Use the data to reframe your expectations and to challenge those around you.

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