Simon Terry

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Apply Occam’s Razor

A plurality should not be asserted without necessity – Occam’s Razor

We complicate things. We like big words, big aggregations & abstract ideas. We love a topdown & system view. These conversations make us feel like leaders. Then we find it hard to make the conversations at this level deliver even the smallest amount of traction to our goals.

Focus instead on the smallest unit of impact or action. Apply Occam’s Razor and only add to these units when needed. A lot of waste, confusion, interpretation and distraction is quickly cut away. Suddenly we are see impacts at a human level and can focus on changes and impacts that have real traction.

Here’s a list of a few small units that aggregate to deliver the impacts we discuss and debate.

The smallest unit of:
– a customer experience, sales or service is one customer interaction
– productivity is one task
– profitability is one sale
– branding is one customer decision
– communication is one message received
– leadership is one interaction
– purpose is one task
– learning is one skill applied
– employee engagement is one question
– trust or reputation is one interaction
– work is one task
– change is one new action
– innovation is one experiment

Each of these little actions or interaction aggregate to form their impacts. Most are controlled by others not you. Change at this level is more powerful. Piled on top of each other these small units create the measures we treasure. If we want better outcomes, we need to make sure our plans work at this tangible level.

What is the smallest unit in the challenges you face? What would be different if you focused on only changes at that level?


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