Standards: Keep it Simple

By Summer Teal Simpson

Of all the amazing standards that hang on our wall, this is the one that echoes in my mind: keep it simple.

Simple 1

It applies to Focus Lab in obvious ways: we observe a simple design aesthetic; we streamline processes to only what is needed; we look to build and grow simple, honest relationships with our clients; we 86 the bullshit.

That’s been one of my mantras - focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains

Steve Jobs

As a copywriter, I have long tended toward the verbose. Keeping it simple, a time-tested trick-of-the-trade proffered from Stephen King to Strunk and White, delivers a more powerful message. Every time. Simplicity demands articulation. It weeds out the filler from the point. It communicates. It resonates. It reflects a certain genuineness, your own mental fortitude rather than feeble attempts at a more complicated writing style or heady vocabulary. (Think Hemingway.) And it challenges your ideas to be as strong asâif not stronger thanâyour use of language.

It applies to life beyond the office, too. Keeping it simple means making life easier for yourself. By letting go of what you don’t need. By silencing an overactive mind or inner critic. By surrounding yourself with uncomplicated people. By following your values.


Simplicity is the glory of expression.

Walt Whitman