Macro patience, micro speed

“Macro patience, micro speed,” “Strategically patient, tactically impatient,” “Impatience with actions, patience with outcomes,” are variants of the same powerful idea expressed in different ways.

They run counter to how organizations and people operate. Most folks, for example, set ambitious 1, 3, or 5 year goals that involve promotions and net worth targets. But, they don’t focus on maximizing their productivity in the here and now. Or, they expect to have a flourishing family in 5 years but don’t take the time to invest in their relationships in the present. Organizations repeat the same pattern with ambitious five year goals but questionable quarterly planning.

Hence, these maxims that are equally applicable to building an organization for the long term (think: Amazon) and our own careers. Take the time to orient around a longer term direction built on principles / things that will not change. Resolve to be very patient over the next 10-20 years as you move toward that direction.

And, then, execute with speed and impatience to maximize your learn rate in the short term. Waste little time, experiment a lot, reflect, and learn fast.

We don’t have much control over our journey in the next 20 years. But, we can choose to be all over the next 7 days.

In the long run, how we approach these weeks is all that matters.

(H/T: Gary Vee, Jeff Bezos)