… Less is Beautiful. The baby is not born yet but is in the operation room and the last stage has started (printers are warming up and are going to print thousands of copies in the next weeks). I got pregnant of the idea of writing a book 9 months ago when I was sparring with my colleague and websearcher Marc Heleven. We were having a chat about several topics that could be interesting to work on in the next years and that would have an added value for organisations and people. My main topic for thirteen years was (and still is) Business Creativity to help people to break fixed thinking patterns and develop a creative mindset and I felt it was time for having a second ‘child’.
And we didn’t need a lot of time to get to the conception of the topic ‘less is more’ – How can I inspire the professional in companies and governments to achieve more with less? In the first weeks, a lot of brainstorming happened to get to the stage where we found 3 big principles to apply ‘less is more’ in organisations. The embryo was created around these three topics: stop, simplify and letting go of control. A first try-out of a keynote presentation got very good reactions and was a great signal that we were on the right track. In that period, I’ve decided to become a single daddy of a book to have maximum freedom to create my own baby. The embryo developed into a fetus. I gave myself a week of reflection and writing-time on one of the ideas-islands of colleague author and speaker Fredrik Härén. The backbone of the book was born:
There are 4 big chapters in the book: why more is too much, stop, simplify and let go.
And even the name popped up on the ideas island during a nice conversation with Fredrik. My new child would be called ‘Less is Beautiful’.
And since then I’ve been working very hard. Thousands of euros, hundreds of days, dozens of interviews, mail-conversations and a lot of research have resulted in sixty-nine inspiring stories from all over the world from organisations and people who have applied the ‘Less is Beautiful’ theme in a great way. Every story is summarized in maximum 300 words. You will find a broad spectrum of tools & examples going from famous companies like Google and Apple that are known for their simple layout to an unusual social media campaign from Harry Potters’ themeparc; or going from the NYC 311 call center to patient-centered hospitals; or tools like the Aunt Bertha test to totally new concepts like a nearling or wonderwalk.
Quite early in the process, I invited my favorite designer and artist Kathleen Steegmans to join me in this project to create a beautifully designed book. And a few weeks ago, Sam De Kegel got into the picture to do the editing of all the texts that have been brought forth.
Today is the final day to do the finishing touch and the contractions have already started. The baby is ready to be shown to the world.
I invite you all for the ‘baby party’ around the end of October and then you can admire the newborn on the website www.lessisbeautiful.co. And of course I hope that you will buy a copy and be inspired by the hard labor of the previous months.
Thanks for all the gifts of the aunts and uncles at the crowdfunding platform. Your support is absolutely appreciated.