“Simples” has worked its way into our language, or at least, we seem to hear it a lot. If you’ve not yet seen Compare the Market/Meerkat television adverts, then watch this video.

Simplicity is under-rated

So many folk turn management or sales or leadership into a science. A Dark Art that has many secrets to be learned.

I’m not saying that these aren’t complex subjects worth years of exploration – don’t get me started on the subconscious mind, sub-modalities, or Cartesian coordinates – but their application in real-life should be kept nice and simple.

Or simples, as it were.

Landing real change and performance shifts require the expertise to pick the right approach and with clarity, whether you’re leading yourself or others.

You get what you focus on

This understanding of the human brain can bring about powerful results. It affects what we think, see, feel, hear and do.

Therefore, focus on what you want, not what you don’t want.

Find ways that get you into your most productive thinking, so that the behaviours and actions you want start to flow.

Coaching a manager recently we replaced: “I don’t want to upset them” and “I’m trying to be less pushy” with “I listen to them and hear their side of things first.”

In addition to that, we got them listening to a particular piece of music on their iPod before a big meeting, and having much less coffee that morning; it had the desired effect.

No fancy complicated stuff. They stopped fixating on what they didn’t want, and focused on what they did want.

If it won’t fit on a post-it note, it won’t fit in your day!

Some simple advice was given to me by Andrew Halfacre about workload planning.

The idea being that we function best with focus and simplicity during a finite amount of time.

We might hope to get all 50 things done on our list, but by challenging ourselves to 3-5 priorities for a day, we get the really important stuff done with less distraction.

For example – take close notice of what you’re focused on in the next hour, and review this. You might find the results interesting and challenging.

Above all, keep it simples!