Cut It Loose

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Sometimes subtraction is the best thing for your business

By Andrea Hill

I recently read an article about the genius of balance bikes, which are a toddler bike alternative that teaches children to balance on two wheels by pushing along with their feet rather than learning to pedal with training wheels. The author was pointing out that sometimes the most creative solutions come from removing an element, not adding one.

This is true in business as well. We spend so much time trying to figure out how to add elements to our business: more technology, people, services, products. But how often do you stop to think about the power of removing something from your business? Typically, business owners only use subtraction when it comes to labor or other cost cuts. But cost-cutting is a zero-sum game. Let’s examine a few eliminations that could increase your creativity and productivity.