A favorite possession of mine is a cross-stitch piece of work that I bought at an antique shop years ago. It has only three words stitched on it – “Simplify, Simplify, Simplify.” These are not easy words to live by to be sure. Thankfully there are two new books that focus on the idea of simplicity and how to achieve it in government and business. Michiko Kakutani (The New York Times) reviews these books in a recent article:

Simple: Conquering the Crisis of Complexity is by Alan Siegel and Irene Etzkorn. “It is a straightforward brief on simplicity, providing the reader with interesting examples of companies that have successfully embraced it as a business strategy while only occasionally slipping into overly simplistic advice.”

Simpler: The Future of Government is by Cass R. Sunstein. Mr. Sunstein was the administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs from 2009 to 2012. This book “is a more detailed, more nuanced look at how rules and regulations can be made simpler, and how the social environment in which we make decisions can be “nudged’ in ways that help us to make more rational, sensible choices.”

Also, here is a video clip from WSJ.com where Alan Siegel explains that America and the world are suffering from a crisis of complexity and WSJ’s Ryan Sager asks him how we can achieve more simplicity.