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Publisher's Summary

Ever since Einstein's study of Brownian Motion, scientists have understood that a little disorder can actually make systems more effective. Yet most people still shun disorder or suffer guilt over the mess they can't avoid.

With a spectacular array of true stories and case studies of the hidden benefits of mess, A Perfect Mess overturns the accepted wisdom that tight schedules, organization, neatness, and consistency are the keys to success. Drawing on examples from business, parenting, cooking, the war on terrorism, retail, and even the career of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Abrahamson and Freedman demonstrate that moderately messy systems use resources more efficiently, yield better solutions, and are harder to break than neat ones.

Applying this idea on scales both large (government, society) and small (desktops, garages), A Perfect Mess uncovers the ways messiness can trump neatness, and will help you assess the right amount of disorder for any system.

©2007 Eric Abrahamson and David H. Freedman (P)2007 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"The advice is good and the arguments intriguing." (Publishers Weekly)
"Flying utterly in the face of conventional wisdom, the authors turn the world of organization on its head to examine how messy systems can be more effective than highly organized ones." (Booklist)

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