“Complexity comes about when you can’t solve a problem in one fell swoop. Complexity is a stacking of partial solutions. Resulting in an acceptable, but not perfect fix.”—Mike Michalowicz, author of Profit First
There’s a thing that happens when you run your business long enough—temporary solutions stack on top of each other creating complexity that doesn’t serve you:
Your VA calls to make appointments for you instead of transitioning to an on-line calendar scheduler.
You stick with an invoicing/bookkeeping system that was perfect when you started, but is a poor choice now.
Your CPA doesn’t have any other businesses that look like yours—and some of their advice (systems and decisions) feels unworkable.
The email system that worked smoothly when you did one mailing a month to a hundred people isn’t cutting it now that you’re sending thousands.
And it’s not just any one thing—there is a ripple effect that adds often invisible complexity that reduces your productivity and profit.
That same VA who isn’t at least suggesting an automated calendar solution is probably not on the look-out for other productivity enhancers either.
And meanwhile, that VA keeps adding to the complexity of running your business.
Without an automated calendar, it’s tough to sell anything requiring a 1-1 meeting via a website click (and when you’re selling expertise, an automated meeting call can be a not insignificant revenue stream).
And if you aren’t directing the buyer to an immediate chance to get on your calendar, they are 1) less likely to buy at all and 2) more likely to require a sales call before buying.
Either reduces your revenue opportunity and increases the time you must spend for those dollars.
Unfortunately, this kind of complexity often stays invisible until you hit a pain point: you want to reach a new market, something breaks or a vendor leaves you/goes out of business.
To regularly—say once or twice a year—take a look at where complexity can be replaced with a more simple, elegant solution.
A solution that positions you for where you want to take your business (which I’m envisioning includes fewer hours, less stress and more profit).