Whenever I’m asked to be someone’s Sales Coach or facilitate a workshop on Sales, I generally hear how hard sales can be, how much energy it takes and how getting a job with a salary is so much easier. The funny thing is, I don’t think it’s hard at all, and when I work with someone, they generally end up saying to me, “Wow, you make things so easy.” That’s what we mean when we say…KISS-Keep It Simple Sweetheart…
For me, when something is too difficult to understand, I shut down. I’m not saying that everything has to be so easy that I can do it with my eyes closed. I’m saying that if the directions or instructions are written for someone that is an engineer or has a doctorate, or you need a thesaurus to understand the words, I’m finished before I even begin. Not everything has to be so complicated and yet so many people create products and services that are more challenging than necessary.
I can remember during my Insurance years how some of the agents made everything difficult. Insurance is hard enough to understand so why make the process that way as well? Some agents had to get ready to get ready and others had to know every single thing before they could attempt to get ready. We lovingly called it “analysis causes paralysis” and if we could get them to understand how keeping it simple was the way to go, we could keep them in the business. Unfortunately, that didn’t always happen but when it did, the look of relief and the excitement in their voices were all you needed to see and hear.
When I would present an insurance policy to a perspective client, I didn’t read the brochure to them. Instead I asked a lot of questions and explained in clear and concise terms how the policy worked. Again I would here, “Wow, you made it so simple and easy to understand.” My goal was not to dazzle them with my knowledge; my goal was to make sure they understood what they were going to buy, how to use it and know I was in their corner.
Do we live in a world of being unrealistic about the complexity of a project or situation? Or are we programmed to believe, nothing is easy? Many times people over-complicate things in business. Any idea why? Perhaps it is an attempt to display their intelligence and, what happens is that they end up pushing people away and ultimately losing credibility. When you are truly intelligent, you share your knowledge rather than seeing everyone as a threat. These people become great leaders and they love to share their expertise and teach others how the best and easiest way to understand what they are trying to learn and become successful. We really don’t have to make anything more complicated than it needs to be.
The truth is that simplicity is not easy to achieve. Sometimes we work harder at keeping things simple than working on a complex matter. Sounds kind of backwards doesn’t it? But the fact is that helping yourself or someone else find an easier way to do something can take out the feeling of being overwhelmed and you may find that task to turn into something you really enjoy doing…and it doesn’t take hours to decipher what is required of you.
Let’s talk about some simple tips for…keeping it simple:
1. Find out the one thing that you do really well and do it. Rather than over-complicate things, focus on being the best at one thing and then do it, stick to it and rinse and repeat.
2. What are you trying to accomplish? What is it that you or your product or service is trying to solve? Don’t start traveling down the rabbit hole and trying to be everything to everybody. Stay on track and remember your goal.
3. It’s OK to find out it doesn’t work-When you are working on one thing, and you know why you are doing it, if it doesn’t work, you can adjust it or park it. When something doesn’t work, take those lessons and move it forward so that you will succeed on the next try.
4. Listen to your intuition-As women we know we have that 6th sense. If it doesn’t feel right, you’re probably on to something. We all know what happens when we don’t listen now don’t we?
5. What experience will your customers have? No matter what, your litmus test is the experience your customer will have. Why should they work with you? Why will they return and why will they bring their friends? These are questions that you need to have the answers for so that you know you are on the right track.
Business doesn’t need to be complicated and neither does the customer experience: it’s about keeping it simple, valuable and having them come back again and again. Keep things simple and see how that pans out for you. It can be as simple as:
Get a customer, listen to what they want so you can make them happy, ask for a referral and start from the beginning. I know it sounds too easy right? Think about it though. What if you did this every day? What if everything you did, answers one of these steps? What do you think would happen to your business? If everything you do helps you to get a new customer, makes them happy and you get a referral, what else would make such a positive impact on your business? It’s simple yes, but extremely powerful.