Stop Making Work Difficult, Start Delivering Value

The saying “knowledge is power” has been around for decades and serves as a constant reminder that a critical component of success is understanding a certain subject, topic, or issue. The saying is catchy and seems to invoke a unique truth, but it is wrong. Knowledge is not power. Knowledge is merely awareness. Applied knowledge is power.

In order to actually deliver value to anything, you must take action! Bureaucratic processes, red tape, and convoluted procedures all fail to generate true value, yet plague companies throughout the world. Instead of committing to a course of action that will produce results, businesses place emphasis on elaborate activities that fail to generate anything tangible.

When you boil business down to the simplest form, every company is a system that needs to operate as quickly and efficiently as possible. This is not a novel concept. However, many companies still add barriers that restrict the ability for them to be successful.

This is especially true for companies that resist the urge to change and fight progressive techniques that could simplify operations. Rather than automating manual processes, finding ways to eliminate redundant activities, and removing programs that lack relevance, businesses justify their decisions based on the desire to not upset the flow of their operation. In theory this is attractive. However, the advanced state of the economy we are in makes it impractical. With extraordinary competition at every part of the value chain, the importance of removing unnecessary lag and excessive overprocessing is critical.

Making work more difficult than it has to be costs companies time and money, with the excess effort wasted, resulting in no additional value being generated. Whether it involves employees putting time and effort into procedures that are unnecessary or wasteful, equipment being used for misguided reasons, or a myriad of other avoidable actions, placing emphasis on activities that lack value pushes companies away from being competitive and toward a state of insignificance.

Further, beyond the monetary costs, making work more difficult than it has to be destroys morale. When employees experience a loss of productivity due to unnecessary activities being inserted into their daily routine, their inherent inclination is to reduce effort or remove themselves from their current work environment. Navigating around unnecessary obstacles is not appreciated by anyone. Most employees will begrudgingly complete the assignment, avoid putting forth their best effort, or look for a way out. Though this is not an attractive outlook, it is a natural response. Employees understand when their time and talents are being wasted and do not want to remain in that environment if they can avoid it.

Contrary to making work more difficult than it has to be is being obsessed with execution. Removing all unnecessary barriers and allowing employees to fulfill their duties without distraction or hindrance creates a unique motivation focused on delivering value. It is the way the best companies operate. They strip away all potential roadblocks and hindrances and prioritize delivering results.

If you want to be successful, stop making work more difficult than it has to be. Place all your efforts into getting things done. Even the best laid plans will require you to adjust as you go. Start moving forward and make changes as you progress.

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