KISS is an acronym for "Keep it simple, stupid" as a design principle noted by the U.S. Navy in 1960. The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated; therefore simplicity should be a key goal in design and unnecessary complexity should be avoided.
Back in the days before Facebook groups, online communities and meetups we had these things called fan clubs. One such famous fan club that’s still going strong today was called - The KISS Army fan club.
The KISS Army in its heyday attracted droves of kids and adults to its membership ranks. The club served as a magnet pulling in kids and adults from all over the world who followed the spectacle that was KISS.
KISS the band achieved this iconic status through practicing what their namesake in business circles stands for namely - Keeping It Simple.
I know this is a long build up but I think it's worth a mention. KISS has always been a very simple band. They focused on only doing a few things really well which were
- Being larger than life
- Putting on the greatest show on earth
They never had a the huge radio success that other bands had but that wasn't what they were about. Their success was tied to keeping things simple.
Thanks for putting up with my walk down memory lane. Now onto my point.
I received a call yesterday from the Controller at one of our clients that is in the market for a new accounting/ERP package. The Controller called me because she wanted to know about this huge behemoth ERP system which shall remain nameless. She had found it on the internet as was curious if would fit their needs. The package she was referring to is not simple. It takes a really long time to implement and would require a huge development effort to even get off the ground.
I shared with her the following concept which we shall call the Vanilla Concept.
I explained to her that we were looking for something vanilla. She responded back to me by saying - I love vanilla and I hate chocolate. We laughed and then I said I like vanilla too.
Then I explained the following.
Most small businesses are not organized to be able to implement massive ERP project. Quite frankly most small businesses don't need an massive ERP app. What small businesses need is an application that will meet their needs right out of the box. I brought her back to the requirements we had drafted and what the main goals were of the project.
I think we all have a tendency tendency to want more and more and more and dream bigger and bigger when looking for line of business applications. Understanding your requirements is key to making a decision.
But more important - keeping it simple - will enable your business to move forward while you build your KISS Army.