By Craig Johns
Why do we fall down the trap of thinking and making things more complex than they should be?
Simplification is Sophistication. Do you find it easy to make something difficult, but a challenge to make it simple? The simpler you make something the more sophisticated it becomes.
KISS – Keep it simple stupid is a great acronym too seldom used. We often make everything very complex, leaving both ourselves and those we are talking to confused and unsure.
As Albert Einstein once said:
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough”.
A common trap people fall into is thinking that it is the people were are talking too’s fault for why they don’t understand, rather than placing the emphasis back on ourselves, as the one (s) presenting the concept or information.
Being able to deliver a compelling message to our athletes or employee comes down to your ability to make it understandable to the audience you are speaking or writing to. It is common for coaches to send their athletes off with a task and for them to return as a failure, in the their eyes. This is not because the employee or athlete wasn’t capable of doing it, but because they didn’t understand what was being asked or provided to them.
It is important that you, as a coach, are able to analyze a situation and determine whether the message they are presenting is actually being understood. If you can’t explain it in less than 20% of the words you used, then it is probably too complex and you don’t understand your subject matter well enough. The ability of an athlete to understand what the coach message is, can have a major effect on the trust and support they will provide.
Richard Branson summed complexity up with the following:
“Complexity is your enemy. Any fool can make something complicated. It is hard to make something simpler.”
How do you check if your message is being understood and whether you understand your message well enough?