Everyone knows. What they know is that complexity is a con.
The goal of that scam is to convince others that they should buy your points of view, products or services. One of the last leaders to leverage the supposed power of complexity in communications had been Alan Greenspan. Now when his name comes up, we roll our eyes.
The superheroes in current leadership communications are those who invest the mental energy into simplifying. They include Pope Francis, Peter Thiel, Bill Clinton, Joe Patrice, Warren Buffett, Jamie Dimon, and Roger Ailes.
Simplification isn't easy. Thanks to over-education, the default is complexity. In answering exam questions and writing term papers and dissertations, today's leaders were rewarded for stuffing in plenty of concepts, housed in a mulitiplicity of words.
Just read the white papers of brandname companies. Ha-ha-ha, of course you won't read those ponderous documents which are supposedly positioned and packaged to sell services and products.
Essentially, simplification entails understanding what the issue is about. The issue isn't over-regulation. The issue is: Regulations are killing my business. That's how the opinion-editorial (op-ed) should start out in The Wall Street Journal. Simplification then requires one telling example, not 10. Then, simplify the solution. End with a simple call to action.
How to get started on Simple? It's the mindset. Leaders have to force themselves to adopt a binary system of thought. For instance, either this tactic helps the nation or it doesn't. Nothing in between. No whine to give it more time.
Next, put that into conversational text. And run that by a Millennial or member of Generation Z. If they smirk, try again. And again.
Then, pitch the op-ed or the keynote speech to those with the influence to get exposure. No bites. Try again to distill the issue to the essence.
It took me too long to shift from ponderous to perfectly marketable in my sales materials. The obstacle? I didn't believe in myself. Simplification demands self-confidence.