When you are developing your skills, your focus is on complexity. There is good reason for this.
During your apprenticeship, which I believe is your first seven to ten years of experience, it is imperative that you understand technical detail and how to execute complex procedures.
You must establish the ability to carry out a series of steps, in the exact order to produce a predictable and satisfactory result.
Complexity and technical proficiency is the key.
But that's your first life on the business journey.
In your second life on the business journey, you must shift to complex simplicity.
I like to think of an analogue clock. Over a day, the clock's hands move around the face twice.
Think of the first time you move around the clock from 1 o'clock to 12 o'clock as your apprenticeship on the business journey.
The first time around the clock you've never seen 1 o'clock or 2 o'clock. These times represent a progression on your business journey.
Each hour represents lessons and achievements throughout your apprenticeship. Having never been around the clock face, each hour represents a new destination.
Time moves slowly the first time around the clock face as lessons and experiences are gained. Each hour the hand moves represents an important incremental step in your technical development and experiential environment.
You make mistakes. You learn. You make mistakes. You learn.
You fall over. You get up.
The evolutionary process of your first stage development continues.
You learn the complex. And you have to.
If you don't learn the complexity of your craft during your apprenticeship, you never will.
These years from 1am through to 12 midday on your first journey around the clock build your technical chops. You are recognized and promoted for your technical ability.
You become competent and experienced at complexity.
Over your apprenticeship, you have come to understand complexity through a range of experiences resulting in a high level of technical competency.
But now it's midday. You've been around the clock face. You understand complexity within your field.
So now you begin your second rotation around the clock face from 12 midday to midnight.
But now you must pivot. Change.
You must now adopt Complex Simplicity.
On your second time around the clock, it's now time to leverage your experience and knowledge of the complex technical aspects of your vocation.
As a master, you must adopt complex simplicity.
Complex simplicity is the art of making the complex simple.
It is the ability to go from A to Z in one step. From the question to the answer in one step.
And you don't know how you can do it. You just can.
In this second time around the clock, you simplify everything.
Focus on a philosophy of simplicity.
Everything on just one page.
Meetings with standard agendas run smoothly and effectively - in a minimum amount of time.
Systems are reliable and quicker.
Interactions with your team lead to greater productivity, employee and customer satisfaction.
You only focus on the key metrics that matter. Just drive those and nothing else.
Your diary is less busy and openings allow more opportunity into your life.
You have a regime of nominated 'non-negotiable activities' that you respect and honor.
Beyond them, your time is yours.
You solve employee, customer, supplier and shareholder problems quickly and effectively.
You have complex simplicity.
Everything is faster.
It's not that you cease understanding or attending to the complex and technical aspects of your business. It's just that you've been around the clock the first time.
You've served your apprenticeship and know your technical stuff.
It is the adoption of a philosophy through experience that makes the complex simple.
I encourage you to review your activities through the principle of complex simplicity.
Think how you can make every activity simpler, more effective and more enjoyable.
Simplification doesn't mean you're dumb on the second time around the clock.
It means you're smart.
Maybe even a master.
Midnight is just a few hours away.
Time is of the essence.
Adopt complex simplicity.
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Cheers, Darren K Bourke