Just Seven Things

Exploring why and how we do what we do, and how we can do it better

Does Everything Come Back to Simplicity (and are Our Minds Hardwired to Fight This?)

A midnight thought from Chicago where I’ve been at the Global Online Recruitment Conference talking for Madgex over the last few days.

My talk was about user experience. I found in my practice and then delivery of the presentation that the main focus of the points I was making was all around simplicity. I had to make lots of references to us not fooling ourselves into thinking we know what’s right for others without a lot of deep thought. To the need to stand back and really consider whether steps are necessary vs. an alternative with fewer steps or stages.

The crux of the thought for this post, wider that online recruitment is as follows: do we trick ourselves into thinking that complex is good. Do we effectively have an in-built bias to believe that sophisticated is good?

Even if we remove the loaded word of ‘good’, can we assert that the conscious intellect defaults to an assumption that because we can handle complexity and multiple steps, that this is something that may be factored without cost.

There are obviously many references in our language to the beauty of simplicity, and we are often told to strive for simplicity. However I think that really living the dictum of continually reviewing and evaluating (in effect engaging in deliberate practice in all that you undertake), rather than reaching a lowest common denominator, you in effect achieve the maximum of simplicity with the minimum of dumbing down.

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3 thoughts on “Does Everything Come Back to Simplicity (and are Our Minds Hardwired to Fight This?)

  1. “Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.” – Albert Einstein

  2. I actually attended your talk at the OnRec conference this week, it was definitely one of the highlights for myself and my team – we spend a lot of time trying to make things more advanced without thinking about making them easy to use.

  3. Thanks a lot Jessica (and Mark – as always: the man whose brain simplifies to the optimal, regardless of how many inputs you chuck at it…..)

    I covered what, for me, is a connected area here: https://justseventhings.com/2008/08/21/leadership-traps-thinking-too-fast-and-continuing-biases/

    Within the workplace, if we don’t provide the constructive challenge to ourselves; our leaders; teams and consultants, we run the risk of perpetuating biases within our decision making (be it tactics, strategy or user experience….)

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