We Need More Elevators

ElevatorsThere once was a company that had hundreds of employees in a very tall building. As the company grew, wait times for the elevators did too.

Wait times became so long, that employees starting complaining. “I’m having to wait almost three¬†full minutes everyday!”

The senior executives convened to devise a solution to get the wait times down. The lead engineer said it would be feasible to add another elevator, reducing the wait time down to just a few seconds.

Then the behavioral psychologist proposed something rather creative, and reframed the problem. It wasn’t a matter of wait time, but of perceived wait time.

The company ultimately added mirrors throughout the lobby, allowing patrons to look at themselves and those around them inconspicuously. Complaints were reduced and the company didn’t have to spend an exorbitant amount constructing a new elevator shaft.

Sometimes by better understanding people, we can better devise solutions to their problems.