Going Ballistic
By Joshua Hyatt

(FORTUNE Small Business) – Why did Mickey McManus stuff his office with 10,000 orange plastic balls? "The color complements my green desk," he says. McManus, 40, is CEO of MAYA Design, a $4.5 million product-design firm based in Pittsburgh. Alarmed at the volume of his e-mail, he bought a ball for each message he gets in a week--a $7,000 purchase that reminds employees that "everyone is flooded with information, and it's our job to simplify." Now, he admits, "it's a hassle. I need a new metaphor."