SOCIAL SCIENCES

Frictionless: Why the Future of Everything Will Be Fast, Fluid, and Made Just for You

Harper Business. Jun. 2020. 304p. ISBN 9780062893673. $29.99. BUS
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What will the next wave of successful start-up businesses have in common? According to Lemieux (Undecorate, The Finer Things) and McDonald (The Golden Passport) it’s that they will deliver what they have promised (whatever that may be) without monopolizing any of their customers’ preciously guarded free time. To be “frictionless,” any given business transaction must seem to be effortless and instant and the start-ups that will flourish will be those driven by services that make something we’re already doing easier, thereby adding to that free time. Though there are frequent references to co-author McDonald, the book is written as first-person advice from Lemieux. This advice comes largely in the form of examples from the current crop of start-ups that embody various aspects of the titular concept—”frictionless experience,” “frictionless competition,” “frictionless YOU”—31 in all. Lemieux also details what she’s learned from her own start-up experiences with DwellStudio and The Inside.
VERDICT Following the evolution of ideas that led to the businesses Lemieux describes makes for interesting reading as well as speculation as to whether her predictions of success will hold true. Will appeal to budding entrepreneurs and those interested in start-up culture.

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