WBS network helps 'Simplicity'

19 April 2011 • News from alumni

Ashley Shakibai (MSc Marketing & Strategy, Class of 2009) writes of how the links between WBS students, alumni and faculty have been instrumental in the success of Simplicity, a management consultancy that helps businesses drive value and growth by reducing 'bad' complexity.

He writes:

Simplicity have hit the headlines recently with The Global Simplicity Index 2011, which for the first time has quantified the true cost of complexity to business and identified the most common sources of value destructive complexity in big companies. The GSI proves that, on average, the world's largest organisations are losing 10.2% of their profits due to unnecessary complexity. This research was led by WBS professor Simon Collinson, however, the link to WBS does not finish there.

One of the founders of the firm, Melvin Jay, is a Management Science graduate from WBS in 1986. Previously working for Nivea, UB, Danone, Novartis, he founded Clear Ideas in 2002 before its sale to M&C Saatchi. As a consultant he was regularly interviewing senior managers and increasingly complexity was being mentioned as one of their major barriers to success. Melvin decided to enroll the assistance of a top academic in this area to understand more about the cause and consequences of complexity and what companies could do to reduce complexity. His first point of call was WBS. It was here that he met Professor Simon Collinson, a world expert in international business and complexity. Simon and Melvin worked together to create The Global Simplicity Index earlier this year.

"The Global Simplicity Index 2011 is the first time that anybody has been able to quantify the true cost complexity or show exactly where it comes from. This is an important step in helping firms to deal with the issue", says Melvin "Before now it has been a like knowing you are ill but not knowing where the illness is or how fatal it might be!"

Ashley Shakibai, another member of the Simplicity Team, graduated from WBS earlier this year with a Masters in Marketing and Strategy. "WBS supplied me with the tools I needed for a career in business, but it was the close network of WBS alumni that enabled me to find a job in a company at the forefront of its field" says Ashley.

Simplicity advises some of the world's leading organisations across a range of industries. They help their clients diagnose complexity issues within their business, run change programmes to reduce complexity-creating behaviours and implement solutions to complexity issues that are costing businesses their profits.

Melvin has recently been interviewed about the Global Simplicity Index 2011 on CNBC. The report has also been covered by other mainstream media including The Sunday Times and Top Consultant. More information about simplicity's services as well as access to the Global Simplicity Index 2011 can be found on Simplicity's website (www.simplicitypartnership.com).

Melvin Jay's recent CNBC interview can be viewed via the following link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ISV8hU7ET98&feature=channel_video_title

The Sunday Times article can be accessed via the following address:
http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/public/Appointments/article575337.ece

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