Mar 6, 2024

Less is More

Nearing the end of his reign at Apple’s CEO, I once heard Steve Jobs asked to reveal his secret to success. He replied that he had the discipline and focus to give up a thousand potential ideas for one really good one. This laser-like focus and ability to understand what the really best ideas were clearly has made Apple among the most profitable company in the world.

And…they only had about six products at that time.

As we work with colleges and schools in strategic planning, we often notice that most organizations really struggle with saying “no” to certain activities. They almost inherently believe that all things that they are currently doing are really important. They confuse activity with meaning, assuming that if they do less of something that is an existing activity it will make them less effective. And, we all know that is not the case.

Doing less things allows organizations to focus on what really matters – the really important activity that moves an organization forward. Just like spring cleaning in a house or garage removes the clutter and gives a family more space to live, doing less for organizations gives them the important bandwidth to focus on the essential strategic items. I actually believe schools and colleges could do an entire strategic planning process on “elimination theory” – simply subtract the non-essential items to become more effective.

Try it on for size – you might just find that less is more and it has given your organization the important bandwidth to do the important things.

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