David H. Pink‘s new book: When: The scientific secrets of perfect timing, in some ways addresses what we already know — most of us are “better” in the morning and we can all use a brief afternoon nap to enhance our functioning and productivity.
While our analytical and decision-making is best in the morning, he says (citing scientific research), we are better at creative pursuits in the afternoon, especially after a brief nap. And the best nap, about 10 to 15 minutes, ideally should be preceded by a cup of coffee — because the caffeine jolt doesn’t hit the bloodstream for about 15 minutes, so you get your rest, and then a nice perk afterwords.
(I fear I’m quite good at the napping thing during afternoon meetings. Sitting upright, as the speaker(s) — to me — drone on, almost inevitably I’ll nod off.)
For anyone involved in sales and business development, the timing aspect certainly has importance if you are seeking your best opportunity for success. Generally, make contact in the morning (in construction, if you can get access to your clients, the earlier the better.) Save the afternoon for paperwork, creative planning and, well, maybe a nap.