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The simple pleasures of life

A while ago, I read a book by American chef Anthony Bourdain called "Kitchen Confidential," in which he paints a pretty good picture of the adventures, joys, and struggles associated with a chef's career in New York (USA).

Bourdain was a big believer in simplicity. In various chapters, you can read about his battles with restaurant owners not to overcomplicate menus and try too many things simultaneously. In one particular chapter that caught my eye, he puts the essence of his philosophy in bold words, asking why you would turn "Steak Frites" into anything other than two components cooked to perfection. It does not need an additional prawn or a fancy slaw. Leave it as it is: SIMPLE! It will speak for itself.

This is a powerful example as it is equally relevant in today's business world and our particular case, Finance and Accounting. However, I am sure any mechanical or software engineer, brewer, or hairdresser reading this will nod equally; it is, after all, a universal concept.

The more unnecessary stuff you introduce that only generates paperwork and diverts focus from the real issues, the more likely it is that you or the business will fall behind one day! I can relate to this as I have witnessed countless times in my work that too many projects were introduced simultaneously, overburdening and confusing staff. In addition, too many analyses were carried out, leaving little time to digest the numbers and develop sound actions to influence future outcomes.

To wrap it up, I want to focus on the essentials that really make a difference. I want to show you that less is more and that you don't need to be a financial wizard to understand the numbers game. By learning a few basic concepts, you can make sound judgments on your own. And should you ever divert from this path, remember "steak & fries".

 

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