Regular price: $14.60
Buy Now with 1 Credit
Buy Now for $14.60
An excellent look at the work ethic of a very successful software company that does everything according to its own rules.
- Work is not just something you do 40 hours a week, it's work. Maybe it takes 10 hours, or maybe it takes 80 hours a week.
- If you're taking more than 40 hours a week to work, you're not working efficiently.
- Your employees are not 13 year olds... stop treating them like they are.
- Be very slow to hire.
- Growth doesn't equal success, sometimes growth is girth.
- Planning is guessing.
- If deciding between a few people for a position, hire the best writer - clear writing is a sign of clear thinking and an ability to communicate.
I entered the corporate structure very late in life, after owning my own business, and I've always thought the same way these guys apparently think.
My only complaint, is I would have liked some more real world examples and experiences, but my guess is they originally had more, but pulled stories out to make the book more brief and to the point.
They even say, at one point that in the final draft, they cut the book into half as many words as they had originally wrote.
Mike Chamberlain is an excellent narrator, and really added to the experience.
46 of 50 people found this review helpful
I liked some of the thoughts in Rework. The idea that set company policies equal organizational scar tissue is spot on. Planning = guessing is an original thought. And some of the hiring practices ??? like not hiring "supermen" and working in the position you are filling before you fill it ??? make good sense.
Then again, there are a number of ideas in Rework that are just plain wrong. Smaller isn't always better. Yes, if you make software, small works because once you develop something, the growth comes from incremental sales. And your channel is virtually frictionless. But what if what you sell is time and experience? Then, the fewer bodies you have working, the less money you make. And what if you make pencil erasers? You still need to hire bodies to manufacture, transport and sell your product.
Another idea that's just wrong is the notion that it's better to write a blog and rely on free social media than to use traditional media like PR and advertising. This may be true of some products, and it's especially true of web-based products, but many businesses, like retail, food and manufactured goods, could not function without traditional media. It really depends upon what you are selling.
On top of all this, many of the "observations" that the authors make about business today ??? how meetings are toxic and sampling a product is a good practice, and saying ASAP is meaningless and counterproductive ??? are right out of a Dilbert cartoon. Without he humor. Business people, at least the smart ones, know these things already. There's no insight offered here. Yet the authors treat these subjects like they're the first people to ever think of them.
From the number of times the authors used the words "suck," "sh-t" and "f--k," and the brash, sanctimonious, we're-brilliant-and-your-a-moron tone of the text (and perhaps the narrator shaded that part a bit) the reader is left with a feeling that Fried and Heinemeir are nothing more than a couple of young guys who think they have the business world figured out. But they really don't.
For the record, I use 37Signals products. I think they are brilliant, clean and powerful. But just because a company does a few things right, that does not make them experts on everything.
40 of 47 people found this review helpful
This book does have some good things to say about starting with a new business but (and this is just my opinion) it strikes me like a lot of books of this type as lacking a bit in substance and also as prescribing set approaches to situations, when in fact the best thing to do is to weigh each up as you see them.
For example, in this book they say start small and build from a small base, don't give up the day job straight away and generally take it steady in the beginning. This may be the best strategy in some situations, but not necessarily in all situations.
There are a bunch of other books out there which tell you to always try to think big, and take risks, make the leap etc... which may be the right thing to do in your situation, or it may not. What I'm trying to say is that though the book IS useful and good food for thought, it basically represents one company's way of doing things, not a universal panacea. The real skill is to adapt your strategy to the circumstance.
There's also the business of backing both sides in a couple of cases. For example, they suggest enforce a strict 'no-distractions' atmosphere at work and then later on say that in fact banning people from using facebook at work is bad because people actually need distractions.
Also didn't like the swearing towards the end, but that's just a personal thing. As I say it's got some interesting stuff but nothing groundbreaking or particularly inspirational. Think and Grow Rich or the 48 Laws of Power it ain't...
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
great book. This book can change the way you think and run your small business to ensure that your small company can grow into a larger one.
The author has a lot of advice that he feels was useful in managing his software company. Honestly, I don't know what's so special about Basecamp or why I would want to model my own startup in its image. He lacks credibility and this sets off the book with a lot of scepticism.
He makes a lot of statements about why distractions are bad, meetings are bad, or company policies are bad and he relishes that avoiding these unnecessary complications sets him apart from the big corporates - which it would seem are also inherently bad in his opinion.
E.g. I can just imagine the company's lawyers cringing when he says to take out the disclaimers at the bottom of emails. Which law school did this guy go to?
There is no justification to the advice he shares, no case studies or logical buildup, just the inference that we should take it as gospel because he has a company (that I've never heard of) that he is proud of.
I'm sure some of the advice in this book is good, but I did detect a lot of BS as well.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
must read.. really enjoyed it. very useful. why is there a minimum on the words I write
1 of 1 people found this review helpful