The time it takes for something to happen is very much a matter of perception and sensitivity.
We like to give names to things that happen. The French Revolution. When did the revolution actually happen? It depends on what you choose as the defining moment. If there is a sequence of events that led to it, it become quite arbitrary. Even if we choose a particular recorded event, like the storming of the Bastille, ambiguity still remains. Is it the moment the order to attack was given? Is it the first shot?
Or do we just say that it is the whole bunch of things that happen collectively, and accept that there is a degree of ambiguity necessary. It’s like saying you’ll recognize it when you see it, but it can’t be defined.
The humble egg. Two things come to my mind.
One is why we seem to assume it’s a hens egg or a chicken egg when we hear the word “egg”. Without any other context, the chicken in the assumed mother of the “egg”. This contextual meaning is food ( pun intended ) for another post.
Second, is, the arguments we still have on whether the egg is deserving of the same kind of consideration as the hatched fully formed creature, be it chicken or human. It is a very contentious argument and can get very convoluted since the discussion is frequently emotional and both sides tends to dredge up “scientific proofs” as well as moral, ethical and religious literature.
I shall leave you with the questions, and not pontificate on this. I am using this to illustrate the in the realm of work, in business analysis or in project management, you are likely going to meet similar types of issues regarding the definition of things, and the very difficult to define or explain situations, existing or required. An example is when someone can happily describe what he does at work, but finds it difficult to connect them all up into a nice picture.
This is a reason why I am careful not to give new analysts or project managers the impression that “it’s all in the book”.