Largest Corporations/Companies in the World 2019
In this blog, we explain the top 30 companies and Largest Corporations in the World 2019 by revenue and also provided a nutshell view of the best company in the world.
We are a part a world that is buzzing with the latest technological innovations. These technological innovations have been initiated by some of the biggest and prominent organizations in the world.
Now let’s delve into a list of those biggest and most popular companies which have had a significant contribution in different areas of business.
In the first place, we have another technology company that is almost twice as valuable as Google. Founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak created Apple Computer on April 1, 1976.
Apple Inc. is a multinational corporation that builds high-quality consumer electronics, PC, servers, and computer software. The company also has a chain of retail stores known as Apple Stores.
Apple's core product lines are the iPhone smartphone, iPad tablet computer, iPod portable media players, and the Macintosh computer line. Not only does Apple rank at number one by its brand worth, but it is also the world’s largest tech company by revenue and total assets.
Since its inception nearly 42 years ago, it has been retaining its position as the leading technology company in the world. The company is based in California, United States, and has nearly 123,000 full-time employees.
The organization has also been ranked as the world's most valuable brand multiple times. Some of the most notable products that the company has launched are Macintosh, iPhone, iPad, iPod, Apple Watch, Apple TV, Homepod to name a few.
Google is a multinational technology company that focuses on products and services related to the Internet include online advertising technologies, search, cloud computing, software, and hardware.
It was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, some of the wealthiest people in the world. Alexa, a company that monitors commercial web traffic, lists Google.com as the most visited website in the world.
The company is based in California, United States. The organization dabbles into many services that are created for specific purposed like, email, instant messaging, social networking, productivity, scheduling and time management, language translation, video sharing etc.
The organization has also developed its own operating system known as Android, and other than that it has also launched its own smartphone, Google Pixel.
Google owns a chain of products and services, the most popular ones being Google Mail, Google Chrome, Android OS, Google Search, Google AdSense, and the Google Fiber broadband service. Most of Google’s money, however, comes from their Advertising Service Google AdWords.
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Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates on April 4, 1975. Microsoft is a multinational technology corporation that develops, manufactures and sells computer software, hardware, and other computer-related services.
Microsoft’s most well-known products are their Windows OS, Microsoft Office software and Xbox gaming consoles, all of them used by hundreds of millions of people, all over the world.
Microsoft is another popular technology company based in the USA. The company is widely recognized for manufacturing and developing consumer electronics, computer software, PCs etc.
Some of its best-known products are Microsoft Windows operating systems, Microsoft office suite, Internet Explorer and Windows Edge etc. Xbox gaming console is a hardware product manufactured by Microsoft. The company has managed to generate around $89 billion as revenue in 2017.
In conclusion, it must be stated that globalization has been a driving force that has helped these companies to experience rapid growth.
Today most of these companies are focused on bringing sustainability to the environment without compromising on the consumer experience. This definitely indicates promising prospects in the future for these businesses.
Since it has been established in 1886, Coca-Cola has conquered the world with their famous products – Coke, Sprite, Monster, and others. The Coca-Cola Company has on occasion introduced other cola drinks under the Coke name.
The most common of these is Diet Coke, along with others including Caffeine-Free Coca-Cola, Diet Coke Caffeine-Free, Coca-Cola Zero. Coca-Cola is sold in every country in the world, except for two of them –Cuba and North Korea.
Coke products were sold in over 200 countries worldwide, with consumers owning more than 1.86 billion company beverage servings each day.
Facebook is an American for-profit corporation and an online social media and social networking service based in California. The Facebook was Founded in 2004, by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard College students and roommates, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes.
The popular networking service has over 170 billion active users as of March 2017. Today, Facebook also owns other social media platforms such as Instagram and WhatsApp.
This is the most popular social networking service company in the world and is based in California, United States. It came to life as a college experiment. The services Facebook caters to 2.2 billion active users as of 2018.
In recent times, Facebook has also acquired other prominent social networking and instant messaging services like Instagram, and WhatsApp. In 2015, the company developed a communication tool known as Workplace. The company employs close to 16,000 people.
The company was founded by Kiichiro Toyoda in 1937. Toyota was the world's first automobile manufacturer to produce more than 10 million vehicles per year which it has done since 2012.
Toyota was the largest listed company in Japan by market capitalization and by revenue. Based in the city that has the same name as the company, Toyota employs around 350,000 people in 545 of its subsidiaries.
Their Corolla model is the world’s best-selling car, having sold over 50,000,000 units as of 2014. Toyota was also the first car manufacturer to produce over 10 million cars per year.
International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), is a manufacturer of computer hardware and software and offers large-scale technology consultations. The company was founded back in 1911, and today operates in 172 countries all over the world. IBM has a large and perse portfolio of products and services.
As of 2017, these offerings fall into the categories of data and analytics, Internet of Things, cloud computing, cognitive computing, commerce IT infrastructure, mobile, and security. The company is well known for its great inventions, notably the floppy and hard disks, ATM and the Universal Product Code.
The Walt Disney Company, commonly known as Disney, is an American entertainment and media conglomerate. The company was found by Disney brothers, Walt and Roy, in 1923. Back then, it was known as Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio.
The organization is popular as a mass media and entertainment conglomerate. The company is the largest independent media conglomerate as per the revenue. The company owns several services like cable television network, films, music, video games, broadcasting, radio, amusement parks, web portals, real estate etc.
The headquarters of this company is located in California, and it employs nearly 200,000 people. The annual revenue of the company stands at $55 billion as of 2017. The company is known for immortalizing the cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck.
McDonald’s, the world’s largest chain of fast food restaurants, has over 38,000 outlets throughout the world. According to a BBC report published in 2012, McDonald's is the world's second largest private employer 1.5 million of whom work for franchises. It was founded in 1940, by Richard and Maurice McDonald.
The Brothers owned the brand until 1955 when it was bought by Ray Kroc, who re-branded it into McDonald’s Corporation, and turned it into the success it is today. Across all of them, they serve around 76 million customers every single day, what places McDonald’s like our number 9 richest company.
Today, the corporation employs almost 2 million people, most of them working at McDonald’s franchises. McDonald's primarily sells hamburgers, breakfast items, soft drinks, milkshakes, cheeseburgers, chicken products, french fries, wraps, and desserts.
General Electric (GE) is an American multinational conglomerate corporation incorporated in New York and headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.
As of 2017, the company active in following fields such as Aviation, Current, Digital, Energy Connections, Research, and Capital which cater to the needs of Financial Services, Medical Devices, Life Sciences, Pharmaceutical, Healthcare, Lighting, Oil and Gas, Power, Renewable Energy, Transportation, Automotive, Software Development and Engineering industries.
General Electric was founded 125 years ago and has since then become one of the most valuable corporations originated from the USA. As of last year, the company employs over 320,000 people. In 2011, GE ranked among the Fortune 500 as the 68th-largest firm.
Amazon.com has its headquarters in Seattle, United States, and primarily delves into the areas of e-commerce and cloud computing. The company employs around 222,400 people with its offices spread across various parts of the world.
Amazon has witnessed a remarkable rise since it was established in 1995. During its initial days the company identified itself as an online bookshop, but now it delivers everything from gadgets to clothes and shoes. It has even surpassed Walmart as the most valuable retailer in terms of revenue.
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The alphabet is a multinational Conglomerate based in the United States. It was developed in 2015 after a corporate restructuring of Google and several other subsidiaries. The portfolio of this organization includes subsidiaries from a myriad of perse industries like life sciences, technology, research, and investment capital.
Other than Google, there are multiple organizations under its umbrella, like CapitalG, Calico, Waymo, Google Fiber o name a few.
The headquarter of Tesla is located in California. The company delves into electric vehicles, solar panel manufacturing, lithium-ion battery storage etc. The present CEO of the company Elon Musk had also mentioned that the organization is working towards making electric cars available to the average consumers at a reasonable price.
The company has produced cars like Model X, Model S, Model 3, Powerpack and Powerwall batteries, Solar panels, and roof tiles etc.
Volkswagen was established in 1937 in Berlin and primarily focused on activities in manufacturing, designing, commercial vehicles, distributing passenger, motorcycles, and engines.
It has emerged as the largest automaker by sales and the second largest automobile producer in terms of volume. Their brands include Bugatti, Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, Scania, Ducati, Porsche, SEAT and Volkswagen.
Samsung Electronics is the second largest IT company (behind Apple) and the largest mobile phone and smartphone manufacturer owing to the popularity of its Samsung Galaxy devices.
The company has its headquarters in Seoul. Other than the electronics and gadgets, it also delves into the Samsung insurance. The organization houses nearly 325,000 employees. Samsung also has a theme park in South Korea. The organization stands at the 6th position in the world in terms of brand value.
AT&T is a multinational telecommunications service provider company, which has its headquarters in Dallas, Texas. This company is the second largest service provider of telecommunications.
Apart from providing fixed line services for telephones, it also delves into broadband services, home security system, digital television etc. This organization is also the parent company of the popular media conglomerate Warner media.
Some of the subsidiaries of this company are, CME, AT&T Sportsnet, Otter media, Quickplay Media, appNexus etc. The company has garnered close to $190 billion revenue as of 2017 and has close to 255,000 employees.
Johnson & Johnson
The organization essentially deals in pharmaceuticals and consumer goods manufacturing. The brand produces and many products like baby products, Neutrogena, clear and clear, and Acuvue lenses.
The company also consists of approximately 250 Subsidiaries and operates in close to 60 countries, and the products are sold in 175 countries. The revenues of the organization are reported to stand at $77 billion.
Uber is a peer-to-peer cab service, which has its headquarters in San Francisco, California. Recently it has also ventured into food delivery service. The company runs its operations from 633 countries worldwide.
The cab services can be avail through a mobile app, and it contains different types of cab services like user select, UberBlack, UberXL, UberX, UberPool etc. The company roughly employs around 12,000 people.
The company was established in 1839 and is presently led and controlled by Warren Buffett, one the richest and most influential people in the world. This conglomerate holding company owns BNSF Railway, GEICO, Dairy Queen and Helzberg Diamonds, and has shares in The Coca-Cola Company, American Express, Kraft Heinz Company, and United Airlines.
The company is based in Nebraska, United States. From confectioneries to home furnishings and retail, the company has expanded its business across many perse industries. The organization now employs approximately 350,000 people and has generated the revenue of $250 billion as of 2017.
Walmart is a famous multinational retail corporation based in Arkansas, USA. The company is best known for its chain of departmental stores, hypermarket, and grocery stores.
As of January 2018, the organization has opened over 11,000 stores and clubs across 28 countries and runs its operations with different names. Walmart has emerged as the largest organization by revenue and has garnered over $486 billion.
The company has also managed to retain their position of world's largest private employer with close to 2.5 million employees worldwide.
Netflix is an American multinational media service provider with its headquarter in California. The primary business that the organization delves into is subscription-based streaming service. The company began expanding its operations in 2010, and since then it has been able to reach to the markets of nearly 190 countries worldwide.
Netflix has also initiated its original content production with the name “Netflix original” and has an online library of films and television series. It has produced an estimated number of 126 films and original series in 2016, which is more than any other cable network or channel. As of April 2018, the organization enjoys over 125 million subscribers all across the world.
Dell is another American multinational computer technology company based in Texas, USA. Dell is known to sell data storage devices, network switches, PCs, computer peripherals, printers, cameras, smartphones, MP3 players etc.
Some of its subsidiaries are Dell Force 10, Dell Boomi, Alienware etc. The company employs over 100,000 people from all over the world. The company has garnered close to $60 billion as revenue.
The company is based in the United Kingdom and is a multinational professional services network. The organization which is primarily based in London is known to provide services on tax, consulting, enterprise risk, auditing, financial advisory etc.
It is a significant part of the big four accounting companies in the world. The company has the highest number of professionals working for it with close 270,000 people worldwide.
This organization specializes in cloud computing and customer relationship management. The company has its headquarters in San Francisco, USA. Some of its notable products include service cloud platform, sales cloud, marketing cloud, data cloud, app cloud, analytics cloud etc. The company has managed to maintain the customer base of 100,000 people worldwide.
The company had also acquired a website called Rypple that provides employees with the opportunity to enhance their performance through continuous training and real-time feedback. After the acquisition, the name of the website was changed to Work.com.
The organization is based in London, UK and is the second largest professional services in the world. This company is one of the ‘big four’ companies dealing with auditing and accounting services, other than Ernst and Young, KPMG, and Deloitte.
PwC acts as a network between firms located in nearly 158 countries. Some of the services provided by the organization are tax advisory, strategic consulting, management consulting, data and analytics etc.
Verizon, also identified as Cellco Partnership, is a US-based telecommunications company. The company currently enjoys a staggering 149 million consumers in the world.
It was the result of a joint venture between British telecommunications organization Vodafone and American telecommunications company Bell Atlantic. The company is widely acknowledged for its services like wireless phone services, wireless home phones, Broadband, and mobile wi-fi etc.
Glencore stands for Global Energy Commodity Resources and was established in 1973. It is an Anglo-Swiss multinational company, that specializes in commodity trading and mining company, and has its headquarters in Baar, Switzerland.
In 2013, the organization went through a merger with Xstrata. Glencore employs around 95,000 people. The company has earned the revenue of nearly $173 billion.
Royal Dutch Shell
This petroleum refining company is based in the Netherlands and incorporated in the UK. The company has a prominent presence in the oil and gas industry and is active in every aspect of the business processes within the industry, which involves exploring, distributing, refining and power generation.
The company has employed close to 90,000 people and has managed to garner the revenue of $240,000 billion.
Goldman Sachs is a popular name in the investment banking sector, which is headquartered in New York. It provides its services on the areas of asset management, investment management, mutual funds, prime brokerage, commodities, commercial banking etc. Currently, the organization employs around 37,000 people.
Top 5 Companies That are Environmentally Friendly
Today, it is super important that we as a society try to do whatever we can to protect the environment and its natural resources.
We face a crisis today where global warming and other threats to our ecosystem exist, so it is imperative that everyone as an inpidual and every company does our best to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce our destructive impact on the planet.
Even little efforts, if done by everyone, can make a huge difference. Luckily, there are some companies that act in environmentally friendly ways to run their business. Here are some companies you would not expect to be environmentally friendly:
We all know Lush as a wonderful company that sells green and organic products for your face and body. Their products are safe, healthy and provide us all with wonderful skin and positivity boosts knowing that we are using safe products on our bodies. However, not only do Lush sell safe products for our bodies, but it does so in a manner that is safe for the environment.
This was the business that was strong on producing packaging-free cosmetic products, it is the reason why they sell solid shampoo, soap bars, bath bombs and massage bars that reduce the amount of packaging they require. Because they do not need to heavily seal or package up their products, they can leave them out on the shelves.
Not only does this reduce their waste, but it allows all their products to be beautifully shelved so all the customers can experience the bright colors and smell of their products.
This makes the shopping experience more interactive and enticing to buy. Additionally, for the few products that they have to package, such as liquid shampoo and shower gel, they always use recyclable and biodegradable materials to have a minimal impact on the environment.
Additionally, they have a system where if you return 5 empty tubs of products, they will reimburse you with a free tub of product. Not only does this encourage more business, but this allows them to reuse tubs and reduce the number of new tubs they have to create and reduce waste.
This company is a hero in its industry because it works sustainably in a normally environmentally destructive industry known as household cleaners. Generally, despite wastewater treatment plans to remove toxins and chemicals from groundwater and waterways, many regular households still pollute and contaminate important water resources.
People tend to buy harmful products because they believe that natural ones do not work as well. However, that has been proven incorrect as Seventh Generation has shown and they also give the benefits of being healthy and non-toxic to our skin, children, and pets. This company is both safe towards the environment as well as our bodies.
Many would be shocked to learn that Disney has made initiatives in recent years to become more environmentally friendly by using zero net direct greenhouse gas emission policies within all the facilities it owns.
The company is working on limiting the indirect greenhouse gas emissions by reducing their usual electrical consumption as well as the promise that there is nothing that will end up in landfills.
They also strive to use technology that saves water as well. Finally, they strive to reduce their footprint on product creation and distribution. They are climbing up the ranks as a successful company that also is environmentally conscious.
Not only is Starbucks extremely successful in its business of selling good coffee and supreme customer service, but it has taken on environmentally friendly principles in many realms.
The company always purchases Fair Trade Certified and Certified organic coffee. Additionally, they are attempting to obtain LED certifications for its new outlets.
As they create more of these establishments, the company is able to create more business and reduce operating costs and minimize destructive business practices on the environment.
They are also implementing adjusting temperatures for air-conditioned stores and are attempting to purchase cabinetry that is made from 90% post-industrial materials and installing low-flow water valves.
Most people will be shocked to hear that the largest technology company in the world also has been making great strides towards a more eco-friendly stance While they have not been so open about it, they have signed a $1 billion deal with First Solar to power all of their California stores, offices, data centers and headquarters using solar energy.
This deal is currently the largest solar procurement deal made for a non-utility company, which is really impressive for Apple to do.
They have also implemented a program to encourage recycling of old Apple products. Additionally, their packaging consists of 99% recycled or sustainable paper. However, they do not reduce their sleek minimalist and attractive look at all their products, and they still make great strides toward creating a safe and healthy environment.
While many might automatically assume it is hard to create a successful business using environmentally friendly methods, many successful companies have proven that myth wrong. It is not impossible to create a company that creates good products and also does its best to protect the environment in any way it can.
If we all keep this mindset of the possibility of success, we can all find ways to create a positive future for our planet. These companies pave the way for that future.
Case Study Apple
When you believe in the power of Simplicity, you are by definition “thinking different.” You’re in the minority. Simplicity may be one of the most powerful forces on earth, but it is the weapon of the few.
From a business point of view, this is actually very good news. Being a rare commodity, Simplicity has greater value. Companies that leverage its power can stand out from their competitors. Inpiduals who master it become greater assets to their organizations.
Simplicity Is Always Original
Before you begin practicing your Simplicity skills out in the real world, you need to be mindful of one important fact: A simple idea is not necessarily a better idea. Quality counts.
If you start with something truly fresh and compelling, then applying the principles of Simplicity can take you to fantastic heights. However, a bad idea remains bad no matter how you try to simplify it. And unfortunately, being a believer in Simplicity does not exempt you from having bad ideas.
Apple, despite having proven itself a bastion of Brains and Common Sense, has made some historic blunders. Some were bad ideas to start with; others were good ideas gone bad. Fortunately for Apple, the company has a rather nice insurance policy: over $80 billion in cash reserves (as of October 2011).
As I once heard Steve Jobs explain it, this is what gives Apple the freedom to make such imaginative leaps. It has the comforting knowledge that if things don’t go right, it’ll always land on solid ground.
Since most of us don’t even have a single billion in the bank, it’s nice to know that Simplicity offers its own backup plan. By adhering to its principles, you’ll find that it’s easier to recover from mistakes, and sometimes emerge even stronger.
The Mouse That Didn’t Roar
One of Apple’s best-known failures is the “hockey puck mouse” that shipped with the original iMac and the Power Mac G3 that soon followed. Even die-hard Apple fans hated it.
It was round—and the problem with round is that you can’t tell which way it’s pointed. So people sitting down to do some work often found their on-screen cursors moving around in unexpected directions.
Why Apple never figured this out before shipping it is a mystery. The hockey puck mouse gave critics more fodder to argue that Apple was obsessed with form over function.
A few months into the hockey puck mouse’s life, before a Macworld event in New York, Steve Jobs invited me up to his Manhattan hotel room to go over some ads in progress.
After we had finished the review, we got to talking about other things, and I couldn’t resist bringing up the mouse. It was on my mind because the press was getting nastier, and as an iMac user myself, I had given up on it and bought a more usable mouse.
I gave Steve some of the brutal honesty he appreciated. I told him that the brand was really taking a hit because of this adventure. But what really bothered me was how we were treating the pro users. It was bad enough to give this mouse to the iMac buyers (who were mostly home users), but those who bought the Power Mac G3 were pros.
To them, this simply was a nonstarter. A mouse this clumsy just wouldn’t be an acceptable tool for people who spend entire days finessing their work. “I think this mouse is actually an insult to the pro users,” I said.
There was a short period of silence as Steve sat there, unsmiling. For a second I thought I’d overstepped my bounds. Then, expressionless, he looked me in the eye and said: “Fuck ’em.”
He let me stew on that for a second or two—then he started laughing. He loved his customers, pro and otherwise, and he was just having a little fun with my moment of discomfort. He knew darn well that Apple had made a mistake, and the company had started working on a replacement mouse immediately.
Then the boyish, excited Steve kicked in and started telling me about the new mouse. It was going to be awesome, a transparent laser mouse that was superaccurate. The pros—and everyone else—would be delighted with it. Apple had already moved way beyond its mistake, even if the solution hadn’t been made public yet.
In an interview, Steve Jobs once said: Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.
Simplicity doesn’t like to get tangled up in old problems. It vastly prefers to look ahead. Though it may be painful to admit mistakes, customers appreciate this kind of honesty. When the new mouse was unveiled, the hockey puck mouse became a distant memory.
The Power Mac G4 Cube was another of Apple’s classic blunders—even though it was such a marvelously designed system that it became part of the Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection.
The problem with the Cube was that it was just too expensive. Try as they might, Apple’s engineers couldn’t get the price low enough. Steve received this news immediately before one of our regular agency meetings, and he was visibly shaken by it.
He had poured his heart into the G4 Cube in the hope that it would be affordable for consumers, but instead, it would have to be priced more like a pro machine. In his depression, he acknowledged that this could easily lead to failure for this product. And indeed, he ended up killing the G4 Cube just a year after he unveiled it.
This was another example of Apple acting with great speed to fix a problem and move on. The G4 Cube became a blip in Apple’s history, and the vacuum it left was quickly filled by other innovations.
Like Money in the Brand Bank
It’s because a company is likely to experience both success and failure along its trajectory that Steve Jobs was a firm believer in the concept of the “brand bank.” He believed that a company’s brand works like a bank account. When the company does good things, such as launch a hit product or a great campaign, it makes deposits in the brand bank.
When a company experiences setbacks, like an embarrassing mouse or an overpriced computer, it’s making a withdrawal. When there’s a healthy balance in the brand bank, customers are more willing to ride out the tough times. With a low balance, they might be more tempted to cut and run.
Steve went on record many times about the importance of building a strong Apple brand. And he benefited from having a high balance in the brand bank many times. One of the most negative stories in recent years was the now-famous “Antennagate” controversy.
When iPhone 4 was launched, Apple was battered by journalists and influential bloggers over what was perceived to be a flawed antenna design. Despite the heavily negative press and ridiculing by late-night TV hosts, Apple’s customers remained true. Now that episode is remembered only as an example of overreaction, with virtually no long-term impact.
Having a high balance in the brand bank makes all the difference.
Harnessing the Power of Simplicity
What Apple has accomplished in just the last ten years is almost hard to fathom. They’re a band of brilliant engineers, designers, manufacturers, and marketers performing miracles through a rare combination of technical skills, artistic sensibility, and sheer bravado. They hold themselves up to absurdly high standards, demanding perfection in every last detail.
So, can Simplicity help you build the next Apple? Not unless you have a few thousand of the industry’s best people on the call. Can Simplicity help you achieve spectacular results for your business?
Absolutely. That’s because Simplicity is not the goal—it’s the guiding light that can help a business achieve its goals. It’s when you apply the principles of Simplicity to your job, and to your company’s business processes, that you’ll appreciate its power.
This is what Apple has done. It’s embraced a concept that has such elemental power, it can successfully be applied to every discipline within the company. What Apple does is beyond difficult—but it succeeds because it is unrelenting in its devotion to Simplicity.
As a proponent of Simplicity, your goals should definitely be lofty. There’s no reason why Simplicity can’t help power your company to great heights and help you build a skill that puts you in greater demand.
Since human beings are predisposed toward Simplicity, every one of us has the ability to tap into this power. Now that you’ve seen how Apple adheres to the elements of Simplicity, it’s time to start thinking about some practical means for you to do the same:
Think Brutal.No need to be mean, just brutally honest—and avoid the partial truths while you’re at it. Ask those you interact with to do the same. People will be more focused, more positive, and more productive when they don’t have to guess what you’re thinking. Positive or negative, make honesty the basis of all interactions. You’ll avoid wasting valuable time and energy later.
Think Small. Swear allegiance to the concept of small groups of smart people. Remember it well when new project groups are formed. This is a key component of Simplicity, and you must become its champion. Small groups of smart people deliver better results, higher efficiency, and improved morale.
Also, look suspiciously at any project plan that doesn’t include the regular participation of the final decision maker. It’s critical. Having the decision maker appear at the very end of the process to say yea or nay is a recipe for frustration and mediocrity.
Think Minimal. Be mindful of the fact that every time you attempt to communicate more than one thing, you’re splintering the attention of those you’re talking to—whether they’re customers or colleagues. If it’s necessary to deliver multiple messages, find a common theme that unites them all and pushes hard on that idea.
You want people to remember what you say—and the more you cram into your communication, the more difficult you make it for them. Remember that a sea of choices is no choice at all. The more you can minimize your proposition, the more attractive it will be.
Think Motion. The perfect project timeline is only slightly less elusive than the Holy Grail. It takes some effort to figure it out, but once you do, you’ll have created a template that promotes success.
You may not be the person tasked with creating timelines, but you can try to influence those who are. This is the kind of thing that most people just accept, but they shouldn’t. The right timing is as important as the right people.
Always be wary of the “comfortable” timeline—it’s just a fact of life that a degree of pressure keeps things moving ahead with purpose. With too much time in the schedule, you’re just inviting more opinions, and more opportunities to have your ideas nibbled to death. Keep things in motion at all times.
Think Iconic. Even if you’re not in the marketing biz, it will serve you well to crystallize your thinking by leveraging an image that can symbolize your idea or the spirit of it.
And if you are in the marketing business, you’re simply required by law to think this way. Whatever presentations you make, whatever products you sell, whomever you’re trying to convince—never forget the power of an image to galvanize your audience.
Note that there’s a big difference between finding a great image and decorating a PowerPoint presentation. There’s too much decorating in the world already, and for the most part, it’s meaningless. Find a conceptual image that actually captures the essence of your idea. Be simple and be strong.
The same principle applies whether you’re talking to colleagues or to the public. Over time, a conceptual image gives people an easy way to identify your company, your idea or your product. Memorable images often communicate more effectively than words—which is why those who value Simplicity tend to rely on them.
Think Phrasal. This is an area where just about every business needs more work. Words are powerful, but more words are not more powerful— they’re often just confusing.
Understand that in your company’s internal business and in communications with your customers, dissertations don’t necessarily prove smarts. In fact, they tend to drive people away.
Though many writers never seem to grasp the point, using intelligent words does not necessarily make you appear smarter. The best way to make yourself or your company look smart is to express an idea simply and with perfect clarity.
No matter who your audience is, it’s more effective to communicate as people do naturally. In simple sentences. Using simple words. Simplicity is its own form of cleverness—saying a great deal by saying little.
Apple’s website is a primer for intelligence in communications. There is a cleverness in writing that runs throughout, but much of the feeling of Apple’s “smarts” comes from its brevity and straightforwardness. In a world where too many people are trying too hard, Simplicity can be extremely refreshing.
The same can be said for product naming. Simple and natural names stick with people, while jargon and model numbers do not. If you wish people to form a relationship with your product, it needs a name people can naturally associate with. Product naming is one area in which Simplicity pays immediate returns.
Think Casual. Do what Steve Jobs did: Shun the trappings of the big business. Operating like a smaller, less hierarchical company makes everyone more productive—and makes it more likely that you’ll become a bigger business.
Choreographed meetings and formalized presentations may transfer information from person to person, but they neither inspire nor bring a team closer together.
Embrace the fact that you’ll get more accomplished when you converse with people rather than present to them. You’ll still have plenty of opportunities to dress up and do things the old-fashioned way. But internally, and on a day-to-day basis with your clients— deformalize.
Many great creative ideas are actually born in these types of briefings when keywords or phrases emerge in conversation. Some of the agency’s most compelling words for Apple were generated this way.
If you want to reap the benefits of Simplicity, think big—but don’t act that way. As Steve Jobs proved, one of the most effective ways to become a big business is to maintain the culture of a small business.
Think Human. Unless you’re in the business of sterilizing things, business is no place to be sterile. Have the boldness to look beyond numbers and spreadsheets and allow your heart to have a say in the matter. Bear in mind that the intangibles are every bit as real as the metrics—oftentimes even more important.
The simplest way—and most effective way—to connect with human beings is to speak with a human voice. It may be necessary for your business to market to specific target groups, but bear in mind that every target is a human being, and human beings respond to Simplicity.
Best advice: Just be true to your species
Think Skeptic. Expect the first reaction of others to be negative. The forces of Complexity will inevitably tell you that something can’t be done, even if the truth is that your request simply requires extra effort. You’ll probably achieve better results if you believe more in the talent of people to work miracles than in those who are quick to provide negative answers.
Don’t allow the discouragement of others to force compromise upon your ideas. Push. If you can’t get satisfaction with one person or vendor, move to another. If there was one area in which Steve Jobs had a well-deserved reputation for being impossible, this was it. He was relentless about executing ideas and demanding that people perform.
Take pride in your independence and objectivity too. See facts and opinions in context. Definitely consider the expertise of those who provide counsel, but evaluate those opinions against things that may be beyond the expert’s vision—like your long-term goals.
Steve Jobs knew that the short-term cost, even if it’s large, is often outweighed by the future benefit. Real leaders have the ability to grasp the context and decide accordingly. Simplicity isn’t afraid to act on Common Sense, even when it runs counter to an expert’s opinion.
Think War. Extreme times call for extreme measures. When your ideas are facing life or death, that’s an extreme time. Like a soldier in battle, you can’t afford to suffer even a single hit—so make sure you hit first. Pull out all the stops.
Remember, when your idea’s life is on the line, the last thing you want is a fair fight. Use every available weapon. If possible, grab the unfair advantage. And never forget what might well be your most effective weapon: the passion you feel for your idea.
Spreading the Religion of Simplicity
It’s natural for people to be resistant to change, large or small, so trying to change attitudes within an organization can be difficult. However, Steve Jobs’s legacy will make your effort easier.
Steve created such a remarkable organization, and achieved such spectacular success, that he gained the respect of even his fiercest competitors. His accomplishments are not only fascinating to those in technology and marketing —they’re fascinating to those in just about every industry.
That’s because pretty much the whole world has been impacted by Apple innovations, and Steve’s life was a remarkable news story in itself.
So when you spread the word about the value of Simplicity, you’re not spreading some oddball theory espoused by an obscure management guru— you’re talking about a powerful tool wielded by one of the most successful and important people in business history.
If you refer to the benefits Apple has enjoyed by embracing Simplicity and make the appropriate parallels to your own business, you’ll build a compelling case.
You can spread the religion of Simplicity project by project, by interacting with people and groups one at a time. Even better is to organize a group or companywide meeting to talk about how your organization can leverage the power of Simplicity.
In this type of meeting, you can rally the troops and ask them to contribute ideas for simplifying the organization in any way possible, from standard office policies to the way project teams are created and empowered, from the way products and services are created and evolved to the way your company interacts with clients.
Forcing people to follow new rules is always an uphill battle, but getting them to buy into a concept to the point where they start contributing their own ideas can literally create a movement within an organization.
Simplicity can be contagious. Once you get people turned on to its advantages, it really can become an obsession—just as it did with history-making results for Apple.
Steve Jobs’s Monument to Simplicity
As Apple demonstrates, Simplicity can take many forms. It can be an idea or a finished product. It can be the inspiration or the end result, or the process that leads from one to the other.
That’s because Simplicity is a concept more than any one thing. It’s a way of looking at every part of your job, the jobs of those around you, and the way your entire company operates. Once you start seeing the world through the lens of Simplicity, you’ll be astounded at how many opportunities exist to improve the way your business works.
You can hit selected parts of your business with the Simple Stick. But the real power of Simplicity is felt when, as happened with Apple, it becomes a companywide obsession. It’s the combined effect of multiple parts of the company being guided by Simplicity that has powered Apple in its miraculous rise from the ashes.
Steve instilled the religion of Simplicity deep into the soul of the company so that Apple could continue to thrive for many years to come.
In this sense, Steve’s greatest achievement wasn’t a Mac, iPod, iPhone, or iPad. He accomplished something that no one had even contemplated before. Steve Jobs built a monument to Simplicity.
That monument is Apple itself
Apple is both a testament to the power of Simplicity and a blueprint for those who wish to follow it. Simplicity requires only your understanding, commitment, and passion—though a certain degree of Jobs-style relentlessness will greatly assist.
It will be a challenge because you live and work in a complicated world. But it will be fruitful for the very same reason. In a world where Complexity abounds, those who stand up for Simplicity will always stand apart.
Ava Lee is a marketing analyst with a reputed multinational corporation. She has been serving this sector for over five years now, and have acquired great expertise in content marketing and social media marketing. She has also joined an academic writing service providers company as an essay writer.