KISS in Your Business: Keep It Simple, Stupid
No, I’m not suggesting you put on face paint and dress up like Gene Simmons or Paul Stanley in some bizarre tribute to 1970’s glam rock – I’m referring to the Keep It Simple, Stupid or KISS principle. According to Wikipedia –
“The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated; therefore simplicity should be a key goal in design and unnecessary complexity should be avoided.”
Many people make business too complicated. Following the KISS Principle, business can be reduced to just three key areas:
- – Sales / Marketing
- – Operations / Delivery
- – Finance / Administration
Or, putting it another simple way – Get the work, Do the work, Get paid. Our mission as business owners should be to engineer the optimum solution for these three areas to maximise our efficiency, minimise our time and supercharge our profits.
This article is an overview of what is a very large topic. Additional articles drilling into more detail of each aspect will be coming in the future, so keep an eye out for them.
1. Sales / marketing
Clearly, the old-school days of marketing are long gone – putting an ad in the Yellow Pages, an ad in the local paper and doing a letter-drop is not the way things are done now. Picture this – you spend a load of money on a radio spot or an ad in a major newspaper. How many people are going to:
- a) see it or hear it, then
- b) take notice of it, then
- c) be interested in it, then
- d) actually be in your target market, and then
- e) actually make a purchase?
The percentages as you go down the line are completely against you in this scatter-gun approach to marketing. Even worse, how do you even know if the strategy is actually working? And if you decide it’s not working, you face more delays and costs to try a new strategy.
Developing a modern web-based marketing strategy with integrated email and social media targeting backed up by a streamlined sales system allows you to pre-qualify your leads and give yourself the best chance of bringing new paying customers into your business.
Focus on your sales and marketing systems to adopt tools and develop processes that are simple, reliable, efficient and effective – the benefits to your business will be enormous.
2. Operations / delivery
Many traditional businesses are very strong on the operations and delivery side of the business, often because they are being run by the ‘technician’ like the electrician or hairdresser or mechanic, who started the business because they knew how to do the work. But this can also be a trap – “Familiarity Breeds Contempt”, as they say.
It’s very easy to just keep on doing something the same way because that’s the way you’ve always done it. But when you really think about it, this kind of approach can go back decades, with a succession of people being taught how to do something in exactly the same way they were taught to do it, who did it that way because that’s how they were taught to do it.
Give yourself the gift of a fresh look at your business. Down tools for a day and take a long, hard look at your business and even consider getting someone in for a new perspective. Do whatever you can to really unpack your operations and delivery and find ways to systemise this critical aspect of how you actually do your work. Combining your extensive experience and intimate knowledge of your business with a fresh perspective can be the ideal combination that allows you to boost your efficiency and maximise your effectiveness.
Simplify the core work of your business by implementing systems and processes and you will reap the benefits of better profit margins and more time to spend doing the fun stuff in your business and your life.
3. Finance / administration
Finance and administration might be at the boring and conservative back end of the business instead of the exciting and glamorous front end of sales and marketing, but we all know that without the stable foundation of a strong finance and admin department, a business is really just a house of cards, ready to blow over under the slightest breeze of discontent or trouble.
Having simple, straightforward, accessible and practical systems and processes around your finance and administration functions will have great benefits in your business including improved profitability, better cash flow, improved tax management, excellent customer service and more.
KISS in your business
Simplify, Simplify, Simplify should be the mantra for your business as you eliminate waste, trash complexity and knock out complications. Really focus on the three key areas of your business and strip back the layers until you reach the essence of each function, then develop strong but simple systems and processes to produce your desired outcomes. Your future self will thank you for having the foresight to eliminate complexity wherever possible. Put simply, Simplicity is the Answer.
“The opinions expressed by Smallville Contributors are their own, not those of www.smallville.com.au"
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