The advancement of technology has brought a whole new level of perception from people and the industry thinking that in order to stand out and win, one must be as complex and sophisticated as possible. As I work in a fast paced technology industry, I am a victim of this perception and would always think of ways to come up with the most mind boggling output as possible. As it turned out, not a lot of people appreciated the thought and would like to make things as simple as possible.
Experience in Point
Not long ago, I came up with a project milestone template to monitor individualsâ€™ tasks on a daily basis, and as it was presented to the group, everyone reacted and pointed out the additional time it would require to fill-up the template. The team discussed the metric fields to be deleted and kept, and we agreed on a simple template almost one-tenth of the original version.
Lesson from the Movie â€œThe First $20 Million Is Always the Hardestâ€
I have watched the movie â€œThe First $20 Million Is Always the Hardestâ€ about a young visionary inventing a laptop to be sold for only less than $100. A great idea that brought complexity in all angles which made life so difficult for the inventors, until a non-technical bystander played by Rosario Dawson changed the perception of these young visionaries by giving just three simple things to bear in mind.
What are these three simple things?
Simplify â€“ We should always find ways to simplify things to cut the time required to accomplish tasks. By accomplishing tasks faster, you get to save your energy on other things that needs your attention. Similar to the template I did, by agreeing on simplifying the metrics, people were able to fill-up the fields in less than five minutes instead of the project thirty minutes a day allotted for it. Everyone was happy by using the simplest template we could think of and we were still able to keep our performance at the highest level and be able to progress better by saving more time for other productive tasks.
Another experience I could relate this to is about using a PDA wherein I previously used a windows mobile based device. While it has more features and power, I find myself spending more time on it which makes me counter-productive and less efficient. From there, I switched to palm which only gave me a sub-set of the features of what Windows could give, but requires less maintenance and less time and give me what I want so much faster than in Windows.
Clarify â€“ We should always deliver the message and content with clarity. Having small feature sets doesnâ€™t mean less readable and understandable. Take Google for example, it may just have a simple homepage with a simple text box and button; but it is clearly understood what it is for and gives you the results without all the trimmings that you do not require. This has so much to do with their success or rather dominance in the industry.
Economize â€“ My friend once told me that he can still work on his computer for another year without upgrade as long as he doesnâ€™t install the latest games and software out there which he believes is not beneficial and important to what he was trying to achieve in studies for the school year. In fact, it worked to his advantage as he got rid himself of a lot of possible distractions and focused mainly on the most important things for his development and success.
We should always try to be content with what we have and make the most out of it before spending much on things that are not urgent. Unless youâ€™re richness is without limit, being economical will save us of headaches at present and in the long run.
Simplify. Clarify. Economize. Three powerful things to bear in mind which will keep you sane and relieved of stress and pressure amidst technological insanity evolving and revolving around us.
[tags]Lifestyle, Life, Balance[/tags]
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