Killing Complexity: The Power of Simple Rules, with Don Sull

Don Sull on Good Life Project Radio

Imagine this…

A financial genius spends his life developing a complex financial model with the intention of telling you what stocks to buy and sell, and when, in order to make the most money and minimize risk.

You’d expect that model to out-perform a single rule that says something like “just split your money evenly between 20 stocks.” Except, according to today’s guest, Simple Rules co-author, Donald Sull, when that very experiment was run, the simple rule beat the expert every time.

As amazing as technology and sophisticated systems are, they often end up performing no better than far simpler, yet often ignored simple answers.

simple rules bookSame holds true for life. We spend so much time looking for the fancy methodologies, systems and technologies. We assume they’ve got to better than something that appears so simple. So we ignore the simple and waste tons of time and money building something that makes us feel better, but doesn’t beat the easy answer. And that is a huge mistake.

In this fascinating conversation, Sull draws on everything from his experience as a bouncer at a biker bar to his experience teaching entrepreneurship at Harvard and building and advising global brands to prove a simple point.

With rare exception, from weight loss to wealth, simple always wins.

If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed with complex problems, take a deep breath and listen to this episode.

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“Willpower is a reservoir, not a stream.”

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