I am hoping at least one person reading this didn't already know this, but you can significantly speed up loading of a single RAW file into Lightroom by navigating to the folder that contains your image and dragging it over to the Lightroom icon on your desktop.
Once you do this, the contents of the folder from which you dragged the image will be loaded into the Lightroom My Catalog window, ready to import:
I am sharing this here because I don't automatically import all of my images into Lightroom, and I find it a bit tedious to import just one or a few images. Lightroom wants you to load everything. I know a lot of people love the Lightroom catalog and if that works for you, great. But if you just want to load 1 image, develop it, export it and be done, you can speed up this process simply by dragging and dropping it right onto the Lightroom icon on your desktop.
It seems strange to me though that a program that lacks a "File", "Open" command supports drag and drop in this manner. It is almost like Adobe forgot to block this functionality, since the program goes out of its way to try to force you to import everything. Enjoy this trick now before they take it away.