Svyatoslav Biryulin
People hate to wait
And this is a business opportunity
A young, recently married couple moves to a new flat. The wife is unsatisfied with the kitchen furniture, so they start looking for a new kitchen set. It takes them several weeks to make the final decision, and, eventually, they make the advanced payment and are told that they need to wait for six weeks. Initially, they believe it will be exciting waiting, but by the end of these weeks, they are upset and frustrated. The young couple would prefer to get a chance to enjoy their new kitchen earlier.

What makes Uber and similar applications so attractive, except for a user-friendly interface? Their users can start their rides minutes after they push a button. Nature gave us desires and wishes which motivate us to work, create, make friends, cook, fall in love, etc.. But nature didn't mean we must wait patiently until they are fulfilled. Look at small children – if they want something, they demand it right away, and if they receive it, they express their disappointment loud and clear. It is seen particularly well during long-haul flights if a child sits in the next row.

While we grow up, we learn to hold back and not to scream and shout whenever we see a new gadget, fancy shoes, or expensive car we can't, for some reason, buy at once. We learn to be patient and know that our loved ones can't spend all their time with us and that some things require days, weeks, or even years to come – such as success, for instance. But it doesn't mean that we are happy with that. And while we wait, mother nature whispers in our ears that we don't have to. I am writing this article in a business lounge at an airport. It will take me many hours to travel from a place where I conducted a foresight workshop for a chain of hotels to my home. So I must wait, but I dislike it, and if somebody offered me a chance to teleport, I would definitely consider this option.

We live in a high-speed century. In some countries, people can get their groceries delivered within an hour, in some cases within 15 minutes. I am a board member of an international logistic company, and we provide big-ticket items delivery service for online retailers. One of them experimented and offered a same-day delivery option for their customers – and their revenue jumped up by 25%. Who needs a washing machine or a fridge the same day? Well, some people certainly do.

At a moment when people make decisions about buying products, they psychologically become their owners. Sometimes they become ones not only psychologically, it happens in a supermarket, for instance. As soon as you pay for a loaf of bread, it is yours. But sometimes, there is a time gap between deciding and possessing, and this gap feels uncomfortable, if not painful. But everything painful for a customer may be turned into a business opportunity. So if your clients need to wait for their products for more than an hour – consider shortening this time, and they will definitely appreciate it.

Svyatoslav Biryulin

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