Why Complexity Sells - Deepstash

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Samuel Williston - 19th Century paleontologist

“The course of evolution has been to reduce the number of parts and to adapt those which remain more closely with their special uses, either by an increase in size or by modifications of their shape and structure.”



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The Path Of Evolution: Complex To Simple

Evolution has always moved towards simplicity, increased effectiveness and elimination of wasteful parts. 

It is seen in nature that hundreds of limbs evolve into a few useful ones, just as hundreds of tiny bones of the skull or jaw evolve into a handful.

Though simplicity is the symbol of truth, complexity sells better.


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The Lure Of Complexity

In the modern world, complexity is associated with usefulness or wisdom. People equate length with seriousness and hard work.

  • A quote consisting of a ten-word sentence can sometimes be more insightful than entire volumes of books, but people still pay for books, never for quotes.
  • Consultants cannot charge their clients by giving them one-sentence advice but will elaborate the same into a large document full of charts and figures, to justify their steep fees.


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Reasons Why Complexity Sells

  1. Simple looks easy, and complex looks difficult to the beholder.
  2. Sometimes the objective is to dazzle with fluff.
  3. Length is often associated with effort and hard work.
  4. Saying things people don’t understand creates a kind of mystique around the writer/author.
  5. By confusing and making things complex, leaders often take control of the matter, as what others don’t understand, they cannot manipulate.
  6. Simplicity is often mistaken for cluelessness and/or stupidity.


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