The Leadership Secret of Keeping It Simple


I know “leadership secret” might have drawn you in, but let’s be honest—there really aren’t any leadership “secrets” out there. Thanks to the modern world we live in, it’s really easy to find information on anything you want. If you really desire to be a good leader, you can find tips to help you do just that. With that said, it’s really easy to get caught up in following all these plans and strategies that exist. And while you’re doing it to help make things run better, you may find that it’s just making everything feel more complicated.

That’s why it’s so important to remember the importance of “keeping it simple” in leadership. I’m sure you’ve heard of K.I.S.S. or “keep it simple stupid” before. But I find that when we’ve heard of a concept often enough it becomes very easy to overlook the true impact it can make. So I’m going to challenge you to take time to think about how the information below applies to you and your team. Be strategic about looking for ways to streamline and simplify as a leader.

3 ways to “keep it simple” with your team

1. Get clear on the goals

It’s easy for things to become complicated when there aren’t clear goals in place for yourself and your team. But when you put SMART goals in place within your organization, it helps simplify decision making. You and your team are able to look at each decision that comes your way to see what truly aligns with your goals.

Having clear goals in place also makes it easier for everyone to know what they need to be working on. If an action or task doesn’t move you closer to your goals, it becomes obvious. Then you and your team can analyze the situation and see what needs to change.

2. Don’t change things just to change things

Have you ever noticed when a new leader comes into an organization they like to make changes? We see this play out all the time within sports teams. As soon as a new head coach is hired, it’s pretty much expected that most of the other old coaches are going to find themselves out of the organization as well. New coaches like to change things up. That’s why they were hired, right?

And while that might be the way it plays out with professional sports and college teams, I’m guessing you’re not a head coach. If you’re a new manager or leader in an organization, don’t switch things up just because. I know it’s tempting to want to come in and put your stamp on everything, but remember that simplicity is often key. If a process or system is working, leave it alone.

It’s easy to want to continue to adapt your process and the way you do things when you hear about a different strategy that a competitor is using or a new software hits the market. Sometimes it’s necessary to make a change. Sometimes you learn important things that can improve your team and company, but that’s not all the time.

There are some leaders who are always looking for the next best “secret”. They constantly jump from one strategy to the next. This often just complicates the process and leaves your team overwhelmed and frustrated. So, before you go making a bunch of changes, take time to analyze what’s working and what’s not. Don’t make changes just for the sake of making changes.

3. Automate, automate, and automate some more

There are what seem like endless ways to automate different parts of your business these days. Look for the options that are right for you and your team. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to cut back on jobs or eliminate the personal touch that your company provides. It simply means you need to explore what automation options are available that can simplify work for your team.

What repetitive steps does your team have that could be automated to waste less time? This allows each person to spend more time on the tasks that really matter. If you’re not sure what these tasks are, then ask your team. Chances are good that they have ideas about how their workflow could be simplified or automated. Employees often know ways that their job could be improved but they’re not often asked to provide their input to senior management. Give them a seat at the table and listen to their ideas.

Seek out guidance

SPEARity business coaches in Milwaukee are ready to help guide you through the process of overcoming the obstacles in your leadership journey. They are experts at simplifying processes to help you succeed. Contact our office today to learn more about the many benefits of being a SPEARity member.

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