Simple Solutions is a great road map for leaders of all organizations. This book provides clear, concise and straightforward guidelines for leadership effectiveness.
The authors believe firmly that simplicity is the fundamental foundation of effective management. Taking a simple approach is such an important concept in leadership that they devote the first chapter to that subject alone.
Simple Solutions: Harness the Power of Passion and Simplicity to Get Results energetically applauds those leaders who can “boil things down to their very essence” – who can provide focus by bringing complex problems down to a simple problem statement.
"Once the leader simplifies his or her own job, he needs to then become an evangelist for simplification among his employees."
These leaders earn tremendous credibility by being able to niche down to the very essence of what needs to be done, providing clarity and focus for all interested parties.
Too often leaders allow subordinates to swallow their time with problems that are not clear. Leaders must encourage team members to go back and take some time to get to the heart of the issue before bringing it to them to support or solve.
In Simple Solutions, simplicity remains the key focus throughout the book. The contents of each chapter are easy to follow and the reader will quickly find himself immersed in the subject matter.
Schmitt and Perl provides their readers with a “simple” road map with chapter titles that include:
Simple Solutions is clear that when it comes to leadership, a simple approach is almost always better than attacking an issue in a complex way.
An important element of maintaining a simple focus is to keep your eye on the actual results. This also means focusing on the impact that activities, initiatives, and projects are intended to produce vs what is actually achieved.
Too often leaders put a great deal of time into rolling out a new initiative that is intended to take the organization to new heights, only to allow the team to get sidetracked with outside issues all along the way.
"Don't think anyone is impressed with your grand plan. What's truly impressive is outstanding results."
The best answer to the above issue is to approach results like a laser beam, and not like a flood light. While a flood light certainly lights the path in front of you, it also takes in all the peripheral scenery that can take your eyes off the beaten path. The laser beam harnesses your thoughts and energy to one single path, keeping you squarely focused on where you need to go.
The authors subscribe to McKenzie’s approach to simplicity: “All good things come in threes.” The three takeaways from this amazing book are:
We encourage you to read Simple Solutions, it's an eye opening book.
Tom Schmitt is President and CEO of FedEx Global Supply Chain Services and Senior Vice President of FedEx Solutions.
Arnold Perl is a Partner at the national labor and employment law firm of Ford & Harrison, LLP.
"“Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes.”- Peter Drucker