We recently finished watching a video series called Kamichu (we like anime). It’s a remarkably cute series about a middle school girl who finds out she’s a god (apparently the Shinto belief system). There are some subtle digs at cultural artifacts like politicians, sweet explorations of the difficulties of romance, and funny running gags. I recommend it, but the thoughts it prompted are what I’m talking about here.
One of the interesting things about the show is it’s speed. Each episode unfolds at it’s own leisurely pace, with soft musical backgrounds, and no laugh tracks. Our (only recently) Disney-watching kids, now experienced with laugh tracks and frantic pacing, were enchanted. It made me think about taking time to develop an atmosphere, the time taken to really develop a mood. Good movies do that, though less and less.
I’d recently been reflecting on pacing in music as well, regarding Pink Floyd. They similarly take the time to build the tension to make their musical flourishes. As did the landmark Who’s Next Album. (Ok, so my musical tastes indicate my age. Still, the pacing matters.)
Serendipitously, I also just read an intriguing post about the history of addiction. It starts off talking about how we used to listen to music, hearing our favorite pieces only infrequently, and likely badly. Similarly, getting together for conversations and fun was time-consuming. The post then goes on to cover the rise, and fall, of opiates (legal for many years), and finally suggests that technology is our new addiction, and that we still haven’t figured out what’s now appropriate with technology or not. It’s long, but very interesting.
I’ve gone off before about slow learning, and I think this is another facet. Not only are we’re rushing too much in our performance, our development processes, and the amount of time we devote to learning, we’re not properly setting the stage. I’ve been quick myself, but some of the best speakers seem to take their time getting to the point. I think there’s a lot to process here, and perhaps a lot to learn. We’ve less patience, and I think that it’s affecting our confidence to take time to do things properly. If we don’t, we risk it not working. If we do take our time, we run the risk of costing a bit more money.
In business, increasingly, I think we need to slow down and think a little, and the end result will end up being at least as fast, but also better quality. I think that’s the wise decision, what do you think?