While sitting in a customer's lobby, I noticed they had 5 clocks on the wall. Each one set to the time zone that one of their facilities was in. There was a range of 3 minutes difference in the times and one clock was about a half inch higher than the rest. It was all I could do to sit there and not fix them.
Guess it's the Engineer in me, or some sort of OCD thing. Whatever you want to call it, I just sat there, staring at the clocks, getting more annoyed by the minute. The exact minute apparently varied depending on the time zone.
The clocks were not the main reason for my annoyance. I was mostly bothered at the fact that I was still sitting in the lobby waiting for my contact.
One of my dad's sayings is "my two biggest pet peeves is making people wait for me because I'm running late, and waiting for people who are running late." They may not be my biggest pet peeves, but they are up there on the list for sure. I like to be on time and I do not like to wait longer than I should.
I think it is very important to be on time. Especially in your professional life. Being late can speak volumes to a customer, vendor, employer and employee. Being late can make you appear unorganized, inept, and unqualified. Being late can make you appear not caring or even conceded. Being late can only give a bad impression, or at the very least be found annoying and unprofessional.
Especially if you are late for an appointment that you set the time for. This may seem trivial, and many times it very well may be. Life does happen and we can't always make our time. Being a few minutes late to the weekly budget meeting because you were on the phone with a customer is one thing, being 10 minutes late for a initial meeting with a potential new customer is quite another.