Longer is easier, and less effective

I was talking with my friend Daniel (from Friendly Human) the other day about brand videos and suggested making a brand video that was four minutes. He responded by telling me that four minutes is too long for a video, although it would be much easier to make. Effective videos are two minutes long. Longer videos are easier to make because you don’t have to cut as much content, but they are far less effective.

I find this idea true in so many other areas of life. When describing a problem, it is easy to go into so much detail that the actual problem gets muddied in the process. Sometimes when people ask a question they tend to dance around it as they think out loud rather than taking the time to ask a well thought out question. These questions are less clear and harder to answer. It’s easy to write a long email that is unstructured, but more effective to write a well thought out short one. It’s easy to set a meeting, not prepare for it, and wing it. But, it is shorter and more effective to set an agenda and prepare ahead of time.

Long communication is easier and therefore the road often taken when we won’t slow down and think. Shorter communication takes preparation, thought, and intentionality. But, the result is well worth it.

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