#GutCheck 01: Simplicity.
As an entrepreneur, I have been fortunate to learn and engage with many ideas and various idea-makers. And one thing that I continue to learn and recognize is that the most simple and lean ideas are the ones that build the greatest momentum (while often also achieving great impact). Whether the mission is to shoot photos and tells stories of people in a city to build local pride (Humans of…) or to create peanut butter products to feed malnourished families, ideas make sense when the audience/customer/user can understand how the created solution directly addresses an identified problem.
With one of my ventures, simplicity has been one of our biggest challenges lately. From the name of it to the mission, the offerings, and beyond, everything about it is complex. And for some time now, my team and I have been turning our heads to make it more and gain clarity with all of these elements.
Yet, what I have realized is that we can’t force something—whether a project, a relationship, or a role—to have more meaning that it actually requires.
Part of the jumble of this particular project is that we have overthought it, made more of it to appease others, and compromised the original and simple purpose that it had.
To get out of such a funk, the following is helping:
1. Don’t overthink.
2. Use discernment when listening to advisors and “visionaries” on the team. Always have someone amongst you who can remind you of the original purposes and keep things simple.
3. Prioritize the growth and scale.
4. Do not over-communicate the vision and system. Share what you do well, and focused on that.
5. Do not over-promise what you offer.
6. Be careful about “faking it until you make it.” If you actually cannot deliver what you intend to make, then all that’s left is the fake.
7. Don’t do things outside of your mission just to appease others. If grant makers, foundations, and investors can’t support the true you, don’t become something that you are not.