Thursday, October 7, 2010

Simple Sells - Passion Wins

This summer, Facebook topped half a billion subscribers.  To put this in context, in 2002 the entire world-wide web had the same number of users.  Now, one single website has reached that mark.  The continuing explosive growth of virtual connectivity never ceases to amaze me.

But, I digress...

More interesting to me than the number of Facebook subscribers was a quote I heard on the radio after the announcement.  A business analyst on our local Fox affiliate said this about Facebook's milestone:  "Something clean, well designed and easy to use can be incredibly successful."

As I reflected on his insight, I realized how absolutely right he was; not just about Facebook, but about business in general.

Simply put - Simple Sells.  Some of the world's most successful ideas are also some of the least complex.  To wit:  Post It Notes, Paperclips, Frisbees and Windshield Sun Shades.  In each of these cases, it wasn't the complexity of the idea or the impressiveness of the technology, but rather the simple, purpose driven design that led to success.

How many times have you seen a product in a store or on TV and said to yourself:  "That is so simple, I should have thought of it."  Or worse:  "I did think of that, but I never pursued it."  The point is this -   ideas are everywhere.  If you have an idea that solves a problem or fills a void, it's likely that others have the same need.  The idea doesn't need to be complicated, as long as it has a purpose.  The simpler the better.

What is more important than the sophistication of an idea are its utility and the originator's passion.  Even the best idea will wither without the nourishment of passion.  Passion will greatly enhance the odds of success.  Passion gets past obstacles and heals the wounds of rejection.  Passion is what fuels perseverance and creativity.  Passion is most often what differentiates between an idea remaining an idea and an idea that becomes a business reality.

A simple idea combined with a deep passion for its value will find a home in the global marketplace.

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