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  • Writer's pictureRobert Stevenson

The Sophistication Of Simplicity

Robert Stevenson Blog - Why go through when you can simply go around

Successful companies today are doing everything they can to simplify operations. Complicated policies, procedures, rules and regulations are being simplified, replaced or deleted. Subtraction is the exercise of genius … addition is the exercise of fools. Let me say that a different way: Simplifying is the exercise of genius… Complicating is the exercise of fools. So, SIMPLIFY your operations and your life every chance you get.

There is a Fortune 500 company who has a contest every year on WHAT ARE THE STUPIDIEST THINGS WE DO and awards prizes for the best responses. They believe genius lies in simplifying the process, not complicating it. Therefore, they do everything they can to get rid of stupid, unnecessary, complicated, slow, or antiquated things in their company. If you want to satisfy your customers, here is a statistic you need to pay attention to: “76% of US consumers said that ‘speed’ is the most important feature that will positively impact customer satisfaction.”

If speed is what is important to customers, what are you doing to make that happen? Amazon understands that statistic and then takes it one step further. Their strategy can be summed up in one word: FRICTIONLESS. They have strived to design a FLAWLESS system to make buying a product as SEAMLESS as possible; they want to make the transaction as EFFORTLESS as possible. And, on top of all that, pay NO shipping charges and getting it in 1-2 days. Their goal is to make it a FRICTIONLESS transaction and their goal is working; “less” really is “more” for Amazon; more sales, more profits and more happy customers.

Here are a few powerful quotes on SIMPLIFYING you should pay attention to:

“Don’t make it more complicated than it needs to be.”“Keep it simple is a great habit.”“The secret ingredient is to keep it simple.”

Smart companies try to do everything they can to make things simple, easy, and convenient for their customers. One of the companies I have worked with had a motto that set the tone for every interaction they had with their customers. E Z T D B W… which stands for Easy to Do Business With. I love that! What are you doing everyday to be “Easy to Do Business With?

Steve Jobs said it this way:“One of my mantras is – focus and simplicity.Simple can be harder than complex:You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple.But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”

If you can’t tell me why you are doing a certain rule or procedure … then quit doing it. Simplify all procedures and paperwork. Eliminate excess. Respect SIMPLICITY, because it is the ultimate form of sophistication that leads to success.


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