A Study of Caribbean Time Management

negril01.jpgAs I have often said, my inspiration for this blog comes from a move I made from Hollywood, Florida, USA to live here in Jamaica.

If you are from outside the Caribbean,  you probably have an impression that the whole idea of living in the Caribbean is that time isn’t an issue at all… “No Problem, Man!”

The fact is that tourists to our region absolutely, definitely want a laid-back stress-less experience.  They want to feel as if time, deadlines and schedules simply don’t matter.

However, there is an irony that I recently explored in a time management course I led in the Bahamas.

Tourists want the experience of being laid-back, but they don’t sloppy execution while they have that experience.

In other words, their time management might go to hell for the 10 days they are on vacation, but they want the restaurant to open up on time, and to have everything on the menu available, and to be fully staffed.

The don’t want to hear that the restaurant is closed because half the staff is stoned, and sitting on a beach somewhere.

This paradox is one that lies at the heart of the Caribbean tourist product, and many visitors are willing to tolerate a bit of slack execution, but not a whole lot.

To put it in 2Time terms, they don’t want to find out that the whole bunch of white belts are running around behind the scenes ruining things for everyone.

With that in mind, I have been tackling the unique challenges we have here in the Caribbean when it comes to time management.

To be honest, this is the kind of stuff  that’s not normally shared far and wide, and some people would rather that I not address issues like the impact that 400 years of slavery has had on our people’s time management.

Nevertheless, I imagine that some would find the article and/or the podcast pretty interesting, as it does give a peek inside a culture that is typically hidden from the world.  While Bob Marley and others have done a great job sharing some aspects of Jamaican culture in particular, many of the hot button issues are things that don’t make it into the music.

Click here to be taken to the article and the podcast “The Problem of Caribbean Time.”