Find the Right Amount of Time – to NOT Respond

For those of us who do more day to day support with a set group, it’s important to know your users as well as you can. For some of them, you might find this strategy useful:

Don’t respond to them right away.

The 5 minute rule

It doesn’t work for everyone, but there are a handful of users who will ping me with a question or problem, and if I wait 5 minutes, at least half of the time they will figure it out for themselves.

It’s natural for some people to reach out quickly for help: they might have been burned before for being late, they might feel panicked, they might not have a lot of faith in their skillset.

Letting users figure it out for themselves will build their confidence and more importantly they will remember the solution more. You need to do some trial and error to figure out who your users are that will benefit from this, but once you do, it’s a great tool to use.

(I’ve actually named this tactic after someone I used to work with. It worked the vast majority of the time…

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