the meter of daily life: electric company

The refrigerator and stove. ATM and auto-pay. Self-service checkout.20110912170939_Choclectrique

The computer, smartphone and iEverything. Facebook and Twitter. Google and untold others.

Drive-up, drive-through, drop-off everything.

These and all the other accoutrements of daily living can be accomplished with little or no human interaction. But what do our hours mean without meaningful or even passing companionship? In the drive for technological supremacy and efficiency, many tasks can now be accomplished at any hour of day or night, with just a few keystrokes or drops of gas.

But put two or more motivated people in a room together on a compelling project and watch the reciprocity, the dynamics, the results. The meter of daily life rolls by so much more genuinely with work and challenges, with love and laughter.

Sure there are outages. Projects may not come to fruition on time. Promised delivery dates can get pushed back. Contracted workers don’t always follow through. People may become hamstrung by a gamut of roadblocks. Use these experiences to fix weak links, to learn from, to improve efficiency.

Gauge what you will need for work, for relationships, for living. Then double it. Given this fascinating, imperfect, striving world, allow for what will inevitably go wrong. Plan for inescapable delays, for certain detours that can often add richness and heightened satisfaction if we allow ourselves to be open to monthly statements that don’t always follow prescribed patterns.

Rates of failure may be high. The real tests of dependability and reliability come when the birds aren’t singing, when the sun isn’t shining, when the promised isn’t forthcoming. Yet when two or more people are determined, and not just the kind of determined that passes for a dictionary definition, but the sort of resolve and strength of character that leads to powerful results, anything can be accomplished.

Along the way, businesses are clearly embracing the personal touch, aware that—for all of its benefits—technology has gaping limits that cannot substitute for a handshake, for a person answering the phone, for a smile with lunch at hand.

Embrace those with like-minded goals and openly consider differing perspectives. Form partnerships and genuine collaborations. Become adept at networking. Don’t be fearful of heart-to-heart conversations. There will never be a substitute for true human interaction.

Seek the company of others and watch the sparks fly.