Simplicity – Book review

I read this book by Bill Jensen. This is a management/ leadership book published in 2001. It’s all about finding our way in a cluttered world of information overload. If you can read the complete book and draw the conclusion you desire, this is a very useful tool. There’s one concept that I exceptionally liked about his ideas. With certain tools/ building blocks (as he calls them), simplicity can be applied to every form of communication and, most important, can be used as a formatting device to describe projects from start to finish quickly on a single sheet of paper.

This is a very important lesson I learnt. I would say this has in fact strengthened my idea of longing for clarity. It can be a list of objectives, a route map showing the beginning and the destination; whatever we are part of should have clarity. To the least, we should know what the final outcome of a project is and what our role in it is. As it is said, if we don’t know what we are talking about, it’s difficult to say when we are done.

There’s a downside for my [this] learning too. It is so frustrating when others around us are not catching up. I ask a question – and more often than not, I regret asking them in the first place. I seek clarity. I need a direction/ clue to draw find my way out in all the information I already have. Wouldn’t it be frustrating when more information is added to the existing information overload rather than cutting it into bits and pieces and organizing them in one particular order?

If I am not taking the lenience of learning too much [than Bill expects a mere reader to take home] I am confident that this book can be organized better. It is particularly jarring, in a book about simplicity, to find such a cluttered layout; the pages are filled with blocks of oversized type, notes, different typefaces, sidebars, and other distractions. I am not sure if the author in fact wanted to show us how cluttered world is [through his book] and then learn about simplicity but I am taking home what he intended. And for sure this is making a difference in my life – professionally and personally.

The five-step process he offers for launching a new project: Know which few things are important; consider how people will feel when you move forward on these things; use the right tools; create expectations and then manage those expectations; and create a “teachable view” of what you’re trying to achieve.

Buy on Amazon – Simplicity: Working Smarter in a World of Infinite Choices

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