>Inspiring Your Authentic Week

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Inspiring Your Authentic Week


Posted: 11 Oct 2010 12:36 AM PDT

Keep It Simple Stupid!

The virtues of “simple” are not hard to grasp, so why does it take our greatest minds to truly live this principle, while the merely brilliant seem to do the opposite.

Albert Einstein’s advice was that “everything should be as simple as possible, but no simpler.”

Leonardo Da Vinci believed “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

Antoine de Saint Exupéry held "It seems that perfection is reached not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away".

Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus Cars, sought to "Simplify, and add lightness".

Steve Job’s advised the new Nike CEO to ” Get rid of the crappy stuff.”

In life, business, communications and relationships most of us endure unnecessary clutter and complexity. Clutter is like a drag anchor, holding us back, slowing us down and reducing our effectiveness.

As individuals we carry around emotional and ego baggage. As organisations we expensively maintain cultural clutter. As teachers we add complexity and inhibit learning.


Four reasons…

A lot of complexity is driven by ego, “simple” seems too easy. We need to impress, and complex seems more impressive. Who is going to be impressed by something short, small and easy to understand? Impressive requires a plethora of intricacy to engender an impression of imbecility in the audience juxtaposed with the sagacity of the author.

We often to hang on to our complexity like a security blanket, “because we have always done it this way”, “because it has always been there”. We are reluctant to remove our baggage because we lack the self confidence to do so. It often takes courage to let go of “the crappy stuff”.

It takes self control and discipline to hold ourselves to high standards in what we do. To adequately think things through. To pare everything back to it’s most powerful essence. To deliver value without varnish.

The big one is lack of focus. Few of us really know what we seek to achieve, and even when we do, it is desperately easy to loose sight of it and become distracted (often by the baggage).

The KISS recipe for success in any endeavor…

Define your purpose and and your vision with absolute clarity. If you are a team, align around them.

Your purpose is your overall direction – “heal the world through authenticity” for example.

Your vision is the route you choose to take in pursuing it – “inspire and teach authentic transformation and leadership in business.”

Make both fully present in your mind, your life and your work space. Put key phrases around you, talk about it, explain it exhaustively until you have your pitch off pat.

Work back from your vision and purpose to define your overall strategy. What is your key measure of success? What will have happened so that you know you have delivered? What happened just before that, and before that, and before that, right back to the present.

Identify all of the jobs that need doing to deliver the first few bits, share them among your team and commit to them all.

Articulate you values as an individual or a team. Rigorously weed out anything that does not fit with your values, or adjust it so that it does. Filter our everything else that does not contribute to your strategy.

Get started and have fun.

If you want help applying an authentic KISS of life in your life or business, give me a call.

Join us on our Authentic Business Radio show every Thursday at 5pm UK, 6pm Euro or 12.00 EST. This week we will be discussing “The Limit”.

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With love


Neil Crofts
Neil Crofts
authentic business

+34 646391384
Skype – neilcrofts


About Neil Crofts

Writer, coach and consultant on authentic business and authentic leadership. Neil has inspired and motivated hundreds organisations and thousands of individuals to their highest potential. Neil has written three published books and numerous e-books. Neil is a coach, facilitator and consultant helping people and businesses find their authentic purpose and use it to inspire and motivate them to be everything that they can be. Neil has raced cars, been self-employed, run a company and sold it, been employed by large companies, experienced growth and contraction at the heart of the dotcom boom, tried changing companies from the inside and from the outside as European Head of Strategy at internet consultancy/rock band Razorfish. Neil has been independent for over 10 years and delivered his Authentic Leadership message to a diverse range of business audiences including people at BP, Shell, Microsoft, Kraft Foods, MSN, Jamie Oliver, South Gloucestershire Council, National Blood Transfusion Service, KaosPilots Business School, Fashion company By Malene Birger, German technology company Eleven.
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