The Human Element

Lesson One – The KISS Principle:

KISS, an acronym for “Keep it simple, stupid!”, is a design principle noted by the U.S. Navy in 1960. First seen partly in American English by at least 1938, 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.

You may possess a ridiculous measure of highly technical knowledge, but when interacting with the majority of people who may need your assistance, it’s best to remember that in that moment of need they’re not interested in learning about internal combustion. It they really want to know, they’ll ask.

Let go of your preconceived notions – you don’t need a license to operate a computer, and everyone brings a different level of skill and experience. At the end of the day, however, most people in need of assistance just want to “drive the car”. They have a particular function or outcome they’re hoping to accomplish, and they need to know what steps to take to get there. Show them where the steering wheel, brake pedal, accelerator and transmission are first. Some folks also know how to drive a manual transmission with a clutch – and they might have a wealth of other knowledge to share with you.