Articles > Nanju Francisco

Why It Is Important to Respect Other People’s Time

By: Nanju Francisco

Picture this scenario:  Someone had asked to meet you to discuss something important. He or she could be a colleague, a friend, or a casual acquaintance. You tried to accommodate his or her request and dumped other personal stuff just to meet that person. Your appointment was set at 10:00 a.m. You went to the appointed place, 30 minutes earlier, just to make sure that you wouldn’t be late for your meeting.

Then, time passed quickly. Before you knew it, it was already 10:00 a.m. You looked at your watch and then it was 10:15 a.m. Still trying to be kind and generous with your time, you sat quietly at the table and tried to read the menu before you to kill time. The next time you looked at your watch, it was already 10:45 a.m. You grabbed your mobile and tried to call that person you were supposed to meet at that restaurant. For whatever reason, you could not contact that person because the mobile was “out of coverage area.” How would you feel?

For sure, you would feel annoyed, disappointed and upset because this person had wasted your time and efforts and did not have the decency to inform you that he or she would not be able to meet you. The least that this person could do was to call you and apologize if she or he could not meet you as a sign of respect and courtesy. Yet, a lot of people do not respect other people’s time by coming late to work or to their appointments or meetings.

I have to admit that I get disappointed and upset whenever someone would make an appointment with me, only not to show up or show up so late. If I have a meeting, what I always do is to leave the house two hours earlier and go to the place of meeting one hour earlier to make sure that I would not keep the person waiting for me. It is always better for me to wait than to make other people wait.

As a journalist, I learned how to be patient and to wait for people for hours, sometimes even up to five hours just to get an interview with a celebrity or government official! It was no fun waiting and sitting outside the gate for five hours just to get a story for my newspaper but it thought me the value of being punctual and why it is important to respect other people’s time.

So, why is it important to be always punctual?

  1. You are respecting the other person, as well as his or her time- When you show up on time for your meeting, you are showing respect to the person and also respecting his time and efforts. Remember, the person you are meeting put a lot of effort to meet you by going to the place early so you must do the same thing to show him that you value and respect him or her.

  2. You are showing that you are a responsible person-Keeping your appointment and showing up on time shows that you are a responsible person and a person of his or her word. When you agree to meet someone, just make sure that you will keep your word and not make that person wait beyond the time of your meeting.

  3. You are showing that you are a trustworthy person-If you come on time, whether to school or office, you earn people’s trust and respect. If they trust you with time, then they will also trust you with other things.

  4. You establish a good relationship with other people-By arriving to your appointment or meeting on time, you create good vibes and establish a good relationship with other people. They will value you because you are reliable and true to form. If you want to win other people to your side, then come on time for your appointment.

  5. The “early bird catches the early worm”-Yes, if you are early in your appointment, you may catch or get something good while waiting for the other person to show up. For instance, in my line of work, I always have to wait for my interviewees to show up, which is normally an hour or two late than the agreed time. Sometimes, some celebrity or government official would appear out of nowhere and this would give me a chance to get another story or interview. By following this saying, I always end up with better stories than my colleagues because I always get the best stories for showing up earlier in the event.

  6. You set a good example for others to follow- Lastly, when you are punctual in your meetings, you are setting a good example for others to follow. You are showing the rest of the world that time is valuable and that each and every one of us should respect other people’s time, all the time.


As the old saying goes, “Time is Gold.” Respect other people’s time by being punctual and you can rest assured that they will do the same for you.