Speed Is Undervalued

Doing things fast has more primary and second-order benefits than we realize which makes it hard to conceptualize its full value. As a simple example, consider how we evaluate products by how completely they solve the problem. If you remove the temporal component, the value of the solution drops to zero—a solution is useless if it’s not available in a sensible amount of time.

Now factor in the value of exceeding your expectation for a sensible amount of time. Then factor in the likelihood of doing it again because it’s fast. Then repurpose the time saved towards working on something else that is valuable.

  • Ack and Come Back

    If you don’t answer a message in a timely manner, the other person has to assume either you haven’t received it or you chose not to respond. If they believe you haven’t received it, their only recourse is to message you again. If they believe you chose not to respond, they might have some feels about it.

  • Productivity Is Bounded by Decision Making

    At a certain point, optimizing productivity becomes optimizing for speed of decision making. After all the tools, shortcuts, and hacks, that build up raw speed to get tasks done, you’re left with the cognitive load of decision making. That email you received? It’s a decision disguised as a reply. That Slack message that remains unread? You’re procrastinating because a decision needs to be made that you don’t want to confront.

  • Work Faster Not Smarter

    Faster is more productive because it is a multiplier on tasks you spend a lot of time doing (thinking, writing, typing, debugging).

  • Moving Quickly Lowers Activation Energy

    Speed matters because it lowers the activation energy needed to start a task. If tasks feel quick, the perceived cost of doing it is lower and you are more likely to do it. Conversely, if tasks feel like a slog, you are much less likely to do it because the perceived cost will feel higher.

  • § How to Make Your First Sales Before Launching

    Answering the question, how do you do early sales when you are pre-product?

  • How to Write Software Fast

    There is a noticeable difference between the speed of the most productive software engineers I’ve worked with and the slowest. What do they do that others don’t? Is it possible to learn how to be faster?

  • Shipping and Hiring Velocity Are Predictors of Successful Pre-Product Companies

    In the early days of a pre-product startup there is little to measure. There’s no sales, there’s no product KPIs, no press releases, and so on.

  • Speed X AI (Literature Notes)

    I read Speed x AI from Nfx. It says that founders need to move much faster or those leveraging generative AI will leave you in the dust.

  • Initial Stack for the Noteland Web App

    My initial values and principles for developing Noteland helps to narrow down some guidelines for choosing a stack for the web app: