In physics, centripetal force is the law of motion that helps an object safely negotiate a corner. \u00a0Railroad engineers and race car drivers live and die by this law, and if they pick up too much speed, the consequences can be catastrophic. \nBusiness has its own laws of motion, and though excessive speed may not lead to loss of life, the consequences can be just as real. Despite this, recent survey results suggest that many companies have thrown caution to the wind in an effort to stay competitive. \nEarlier this year, security company Threat Stack released findings that show 52%of companies have cut back on cybersecurity practices in order to meet deadlines or business objectives. And a Nielsen State of Innovation survey found that 84% of fast-moving consumer goods manufacturers are feeling pressure to get to market faster \u2014 and most say that\u2019s at the expense of innovation. \u00a0According to Jenny Frazier, SVP in Nielsen\u2019s Innovation practice, when speed is a priority, 78% of marketers reduce the time they spend on innovation. \nBut there\u2019s another way to accelerate the pace of business without sacrificing security, speed, or the sustainability of your company. By adopting several key foundational principles of the specialization of labor, you can increase your company\u2019s performance and minimize the unfortunate side effects. \nFocus on your strengths\nAt its most basic level, specialization of labor has implications on how your employees spend their time at work. Historically, the focus was purely about increasing overall output, but that is starting to change as companies take a more holistic view of success of the individual and the company. \u00a0\nIn \u201cEssentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less,\u201d author Greg McKeown makes a case for the importance of individuals identifying\u2014and prioritizing\u2014the areas in which they are most passionate and where they can make the biggest business impact. By saying \u201cno\u201d to many of the other responsibilities that compete for their time, they can focus on the areas where they excel.\nIndeed, a 2014 study from Deloitte Consulting that found that people who are passionate about their work:\n\nAlways look for better solutions \nTake meaningful risks\nPerform at higher levels \nPut in the hours to get the job done\nAre well connected to others in their area of expertise \nCut across silos to deliver results\n\nFor many decades, companies put structures and processes in place to maximize efficiency and predictability. And as they look for areas to improve business performance, empowering employees to explore their passions will be key to driving long-term improvements. But according to Deloitte, only about 12% of America\u2019s workforce have passion for their job. \nOutsource your weaknesses\nBroadly speaking, human beings excel when it comes to dealing with nuance, context, and identifying subtle differences. But once we veer into the territory of repetitive and tedious tasks, our performance drops off precipitously. We get distracted, lose interest, and miss the most obvious of details. \nAnd those are the areas where AI and machine learning excel, says, Professor Elizabeth Holm, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. As a computational materials scientist, Holm has discovered firsthand that AI and machine learning are especially helpful where \u201cinfinite patience and attention to detail\u201d are useful, such as with increasing the speed and accuracy of data analytics. \n\u201c[AI and machine learning] are really good at patiently taking in every data point and doing what you ask them to,\u201d says Holm. \u201cThis is the complementarity with humans because we don\u2019t like to do endless, repetitive tasks, and often miss details because we\u2019re bored or otherwise distracted.\u201d \nBut Holm is quick to add that while AI and machine learning are useful in helping pinpoint items that need attention, the human element is essential to determining the nature of an issue and how to address it. \nReduce your response time \nOne of the inescapable truisms of virtually any business is that everything takes time, and frequently it takes too much of it. This has helped fuel demand for business process automation (BPA) solutions, which help companies identify (and eliminate) bottlenecks to productivity, streamline the error-free collection of data, and quickly transform it into action for your business. \nCloud-based work-execution solutions such as Smartsheet can be implemented in a fraction of the time of a full-blown BPA solution, enabling simple, user-configured automation that accelerates work. Many of these apps can also automate weekly status reports, saving countless hours spent manually generating these reports.