It’s not rare of find a breed of corporate denizens, who pride themselves on being impatient, believing it to be an offshoot of results orientation. In most of the situations, impatience is a cover for other problems and has serious long-term consequences. It leads to over managing, not developing others, constant monitoring and most importantly people shying away from you because you lack tolerance. So what can you do to develop patience?

Don’t Forget Simple Courtesies

Impatient people interrupt, finish other people’s sentences when they hesitate, ask people to hurry, urge people to finish and get to the point. All these behaviors of impatient people intimidate, irritate and demotivate others. Respect the fact that the other person is speaking and let them finish it even though you may not agree with what they are saying. Learn to pause to give people a second chance; people often stumble on words with impatient people, hurrying to get through before you would interpret their speech.

Manage Non Verbal’s

Impatient people signal their impatience through actions and body language gives it out. The washboard brow, body shifting, finger and pencil drumming are some of the common tell tale signs of impatience. Ask other you trust for your five most frequent signs of impatience thereafter work to eliminate them.

Arrogance is a roadblock

People who have towering strengths or lots of success to their credit get less feedback and keep rolling over others until their career gets in trouble. Arrogance makes one devalue the contribution of others, in case others perceive you to be arrogant, you should work harder to listen and read others. You don’t have to accept everything, just listen to understand before you react.

Hold on

Impatient people provide answers, conclusions and solutions too early in the process whilst others may not have even understood the problem yet. Providing solutions too quickly makes your people completely dependent on you. At the same time, they feel irritated, as they did not get the opportunity to rack their brains for a solution. Take the time to really define the problem and not impatiently throw out a solution. Brainstorm what questions need to be answered in order to resolve the problem. Give your colleagues, direct reports or peers, the task to think about it for a day or two and come back with some solutions. The key is in being a teacher rather than a preacher of solutions.

Task Impatience

Impatient people check in a lot, how is it coming?, Is it done yet ?, or when will it be finished? This approach is highly disruptive to the process and wastes time. When you give out a task or assign a project establish agreed upon time checkpoints or decide the time interval at which you would check the progress. Ad hoc checking of progress destroys morale and disrupts progress, benefiting only your desire to know what’s happening. This allows the person o complete the task at their pace without being snooped over by your impatient glares.

Impatience as a virtue may be beneficial in few cases only; mostly it may be detrimental to your career.

Jappreet Sethi
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