Looking To Cure Someone Of Chronic Tardiness? Try Leaving!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate

LateAdmit it.  You know you’ve been tempted to leave before.  There you are – once again waiting on your habitually late friend for the umpteenth time.  Trust me, I know how you feel.  Many years ago, I used to be that friend.  And, no matter how hard I tried – I just couldn't kick the habit of consistently running late.  My family hated it.  My friends hated it.  I hated it.  And, from what I understand, every chronically punctual person hates it.  Perpetual lateness seems to be a ubiquitous problem creating conflict and resentment all over the planet.  Luckily, I've already had a little friendly intervention.

Recently, one of my best friends and I were reminiscing about the less-than-stellar, on-time performances of my past.  One Sunday afternoon, my friend and I had made some plans to go to the movies, and we selected a neighborhood tavern as our convenient meeting place.  I was my usual 30 minutes late
and my friend was nowhere to be seen.  Keep in mind, this was the age before cell phones so when I asked the bartender if he had seen my friend, the bartender replied:  “Yes … Dale was here for awhile and then he left.”  What?!?  How could he do that to me?!?  I was in complete and total shock.  Sure enough, Dale had gone to the movies without me and I must say it was an extraordinarily eye-opening and transformational experience.

Regrettably, I never realized how disrespectful my behavior was to other people.  I do now.  I guess this would be the moral of my story.  Although it's been years since Dale left me high and dry on that fateful Sunday afternoon, we still chuckle about it to this day and we’re still best buddies.  More importantly, I'm rarely late for anything anymore.  Of course, life happens.  There are times when we all get a last minute interruption, or we’re stuck in traffic, or faced with an emergency.  For me, however, being late is now the exception and not the rule.  Plus, I really like being on-time a whole lot better.  I'm sure my friends like it a whole lot better too.  Especially my friend, Dale.

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carie shapiro

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Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Carie, with cell phones, there is no excuse for keeping someone waiting without a call.  And leaving is not a bad option.

Jul 10, 2012 01:23 PM #36
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

Congratulations, Carie Shaprio, john mccormack, realtor, albuquerque Homes Realty,

Jul 10, 2012 02:33 PM #37
Joan Valverde
HomeSmart - Colorado Springs, CO
GRI,CDPE,CNE,MRP,SRES Colo Sprgs, Blk Forest, Monu

Carie,  Congrats on your feature!!  Your post is very good, and a topic I unfortunately struggle with....  I am getting better, but Especially first thing in the morning appointments, I take forever to get my motor running.  A situation I continue to work on...  My daughter in laws are both very timely,  I need to be more like them!!

Jul 10, 2012 03:27 PM #38
Pamela Seley
West Coast Realty Division - Murrieta, CA
Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA

Carie, I used to be chronically late until I met my husband who cannot tolerate lateness. Now I'm punctual if not early, unless there's a mishap. I actually plan for heavy traffic so in case there is traffic I won't be late and have to say it was the traffic. lol 

Jul 10, 2012 06:00 PM #39
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

I did it on Saturday - spent 20 min prepping to show a rental home - waited 10 minutes PAST the appointment time, turned off lights and closed property when prospects did not show....20 min later, I get a call on my cel phone that she had JUST ARRIVED.....I returned to show the property; however, she never apologized for being late and the showing was VERY QUICK

Jul 10, 2012 06:08 PM #40
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I think re-educating people who are habitually tardy is probably pretty difficult.  I've tried it, and more often than not, failed.   I think it's because many of them don't see the value in YOUR time, and are clueless!

Jul 10, 2012 07:02 PM #41
Ron Climer
Keller Williams Realty Mountain Partners - Tryon, NC

Carie  If you read my last post , it was about tardiness.  I was interviewing 3 Realtors to list my house in North Carolina. Promtness would have been a tie breaker but all three were late.  I established Dale's leaving twenty years ago.  I will not make myself late for the movies for you . See ya later

Jul 10, 2012 08:02 PM #42
Amanda Christiansen
Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843 - Fort Wayne, IN
Christiansen Group Realty

Way to go Dale!  LOL.  If a person is late once...  no biggie.  Twice?  Disrespectful.  I'm glad you don't do this anymore.  It's one of my biggest pet peeves.  Thanks for sharing.  :)  

Jul 10, 2012 09:32 PM #43
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I'll give anybody 15 minutes. Doesn't matter who it is. The mail carrier, my husband, a client, a guy carrying a steaming' hot pizza dripping in cheese with my name spelled out in mushroom caps, and then I leave. I call them if they are 5 minutes late. But I'm a pushy little thing who is always without fail always on time myself.

Jul 10, 2012 10:44 PM #44
Gary Frimann, CRS, GRI
Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates - Gilroy, CA
REALTOR and Broker

I am getting better.  Never more than 5-10 minutes late though.  Too much stress.  Nowadays, it is only because there is unforeseen traffic, but I've got my cell phone.  Still I hate it when it happens to me, and I am now usually on time. 
I view it as beng disrespectful of the other person's time and that attitude has changed my behavior. 

Jul 10, 2012 11:06 PM #45
Chris and Dick Dovorany
Homes for Sale in Naples, Bonita Springs and Estero, Florida - Naples, FL
Broker/Associate at Premiere Plus Realty

Wow, I would have left years ago.  I can't imagine being late for anything.  I'm always early because I never want to offend anyone.  Sorry, but I guess I just offended you.  Sorry.

Jul 10, 2012 11:39 PM #46
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Sandy:  Yes, it always seems like something comes up at the last minute ... almost all the time!  Definitely makes being punctual more challenging!

Charles:  That's okay ... I like the way you think :)

Richard & Beth:  And, many others here will concur with you as well!

Adam:  Good lesson you are teaching your kids!

Pippa:  Yes, with an extremely full schedule, being on time it definitely a struggle!

Maureen:  In my case, I'm an 'overachiever' by nature, and I tend to do too many things when I should be getting ready to leave.  I've learned that some things just have to wait!

Cheryl:  Thanks ... I appreciate that and I like how everything turned out too :)

Sophie:  Like you, I sometimes think it is hereditary as well :)  Good luck and I H8 being L8 ... love that!

Ed:  I agree with the Lombardi Time philosophy!  Plus, you remove a lot of stress from the situation as well!

Michael:  Thanks!  I'm certainly not proud of that part of my past.  But, that's exactly what it is ... part of my distant past!  Luckily, a phase I grew out of quickly :)

Jul 11, 2012 01:41 AM #47
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Patricia:  Leaving sure had an impact on me!

John:  Aren't you sweet ... you always know just the right thing to say to brighten someone's day!  Thank you :)

Joan:  I'm with you ... I am not a morning person either :)  That's why I have to get up extra early for those morning appointments!

Pamela:  See?  Sometimes you just need someone to show you light, yes?  Congratulations on changing your ways :)

Wallace:  And, on top of being late, no apology ... wow!

Myrl:  It is difficult ... but not impossible!

Ron:  No, I haven't read your latest blog yet, but I will.  I don't understand how someone (or all 3 people) can be late for a listing presentation.  I've seen people late for interviews, and all sorts of other important meetings.  Mindboggling, for sure.

Amanda & Jared:  Yes, I agree.  Way to go, Dale! :)

Elizabeth:  I don't know.  15 minutes late is a long time to wait for my pizza when I'm starving :)

Gary:  I hate being late too ... even just 5-10 minutes.  And yes, once you really think about how disrespectful being late all the time really is, it can have quite an impact on your behavior.

Chris & Dick:  No offense taken at all :)

Jul 11, 2012 01:58 AM #48
Justin Dibbs
Pearson Smith Realty - Ashburn, VA
REALTOR® - Ashburn Virginia Homes for Sale

I do leave.  I'll call the person to see why they are late and if they don't answer their phone or tell me they are going to be REALLY late, I leave.

Jul 11, 2012 02:06 AM #49
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Justin:  I think your method is right on!

Erica:  Thanks!  And, yes ... good friends are the best for so many reasons :)

Jul 11, 2012 12:02 PM #51
Amy Steele Realtor SRS CNE NHS MRP LUXE
JP and Associates - North Richland Hills, TX
Live,Work,Play...in North Texas

Ihave one of those friends. She's usually an hour late everywhere though.

Jul 11, 2012 12:15 PM #52
C. Lloyd McKenzie
Albuquerque, NM
Living Albuquerque

Hi Carie,

Being punctual is very important.  Some peolle take it to the extreme though. You do not have to be 20 or 30 moinutes to be punctual.

Jul 11, 2012 04:48 PM #53
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Hi Carie, great post!  I know a few of these people, sometimes I am this person.  The big question is, how did you kick this habit?

Jul 12, 2012 07:30 AM #54
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Amy:  Oooh ... I thought 20-30 minutes late was bad!

C. Lloyd:  I agree ... being punctual is very important!

Bob:  Thanks!  It's challenging once in awhile.  As I mentioned above in another comment, I've been a bit of an overachiever all my life.  So, I tend to start or keep working on projects when I should be preparing for my departure.  When this incident with Dale happened many years ago, it was certainly a life changing moment.  And now, I sometimes have to wait on Dale to show up :)

Jul 12, 2012 08:17 AM #55
Donna Foerster
HomeSmart Realty Group - Parker, CO
Metro Denver Real Estate Assistant

That's exactly how it happened!

Jul 12, 2012 01:45 PM #56
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