Maybe There’s a Shark in the Water
– VV Brown
This weekend I stopped in a bookstore and chanced upon 37 Signals’ latest book, Rework. I flipped to an essay titled, “ASAP is poison.”
ASAP is a business acronym that stands for, “As Soon As Possible.”
What’s the harm in always telling people you need a task or project done ASAP. The author’s write that after a while, people view your ASAP request as just another request. No one’s going to jump on it, through it, or to it.
There’s another side to the ASAP coin that I want to show you. Instead of telling customers that you will deliver a product or resolve a problem – ASAP, always give the customer details about what you are delivering and by what date. This will manage customer expectations and create a better experience for your customer. You skipped the cliché, the meaningless phrase… and took the time to think about your customer and her experience.
Of course, you can use this cliché to your advantage. If you’re working with someone and want be vague about when you will complete a task, simply say, “I will complete that task ASAP.” This could mean two weeks, two months, or two years.
So when you hear a BP exec say, “We’re going to clean this mess up, As Soon As Possible,” words come to you…
Words come out like, Maybe there’s a Shark in the Water.