The Importance of Keeping it Simple (and how to do it)


As your small business grows, it’s not always easy to keep your processes simplified. The more mature an organization becomes, the more things accumulate and get in the way of performance.

Complexity can be a major hindrance to the overall productivity of an organization as well as to the morale of employees. Here are 6 suggestions to simplify your processes and keep your organization running smoothly:

1. Review Your Rules

When creating a list of company policies, make sure that there are not too many stipulations that get in the way of clearly identifying your objectives. Make sure that all rules are clearly stated so that it’s easy for your employees to know how they are expected to act.

2. Review Your Customer Experience

One way to find out how your organization could be simplified is to put yourself in the shoes of the customer. Go through the purchase process from the point of contact to the point of walking away with the product or service. Try several scenarios to ensure that all customers’ interactions are dealt with in an efficient and timely manner.

3. Determine Your Priorities

Make an ordered list of the tasks that you want to accomplish based on level of importance. Having the ability to prioritize is an essential aspect of promoting organizational efficiency, as it will keep you from wasting time on trivial pursuits before accomplishing essential tasks.

4. Seek the Shortest Path

When striving to get from point A to point B, there are likely several options. For example, you could notify your employees of recent company news by hosting a 20-minute meeting or you could send out an email that everyone can read in a matter of minutes. Choose the option that allows you to accomplish the desired result in the least amount of time.

5. Identify Issues

Be attentive and identify issues before they have the chance to get any worse. Don’t let a minor problem snowball into a major issue. The easiest time to solve an issue is now. Nip it in the bud. Keen awareness and due diligence will ensure that you don’t ignore something that deserves attention.

6. Simplify Management

As your small business begins to develop a leveled management structure, make sure that duties are clearly assigned. As a general rule, you should not require the same person to report to several superiors within their own department. Labor isn’t cheap. Take measures to ensure that your employees are working efficiently, and your organization will reflect their efforts.

This article was originally posted on

Matt Tarkenton

Matt Tarkenton

Matt Tarkenton is Executive Vice President at Tarkenton Companies, and has started several businesses and is interested in business formation, strategy, and growth. He was part of a group that started Renova Partners, a boutique investment bank, and was recognized as a “40 Under 40: Up and Comer” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle in 2009. Matt performs business planning and marketing training for hundreds of professionals across the country, and co-hosts a weekly coaching program on entrepreneurial education. Matt graduated from Princeton University, and received an MBA from Harvard Business School. He maintains his Series 7, 63, and 79 licenses, and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Youth Villages, on the Education Committee of the National Association of Fixed Annuities (NAFA), and in leadership positions in various organizations.