REWORK in 2012

Rework by John Fried & David Heinemeier

I had the pleasure of reading REWORK by John Fried & David Heinemeier, Founders of 37 Signals, a web-based app company.  I learned of this book while reading a blog post; requested it from the library shortly thereafter; and completed it within three days. That’s how good it was.

Fried & Heinemeier were speaking to me directly as a business owner. They pretty much countered everything we learned in our business classes and in corporate America. In other words, they “un-brainwashed” us business owners.

They had my attention with the very first chapter, “Ignore the Real World”. Who could not want to know what followed that title?? The authors wrote: “The real world doesn’t accept new and fresh ideas; but they work.” As a creative who is always coming up with new ideas, this tells me that my new ideas are going to be rejected by the masses even though they are effective. This also tells me that I have to be very creative in positioning my products and services.

Other things we need to REWORK this year:

  • Write your business plan as you are working, otherwise you are just guessing.
  • Why grow into a large company when you can run effectively and efficiently with 10 or fewer staff members?
  • Always keep why – things you believe in – front and center.
  • “Great businesses have a point of view, not just a product or service”
  • You don’t have to do as much in your business as you think you do. Take a good inventory and decide what needs to be done.
  • Limited resources force you to make do with what you’ve got.
  • Limit your products and service offerings initially. You will be more successful.
  • Don’t wait for the perfect solution. Decide and move forward.
  • Things you leave out matters.
  • Don’t wait for perfection; get your products out there.
  • Reduce your “to do” list to smaller lists. Put your most important things at the top.
  • Make “you” part of your product or service to protect from copycats. Don’t be afraid to be you.
  • Solve simple problems and let your competitors do the hard work.
  • Give away something for free as long as you got something to sell.
  • Know how to do everything in your business so you will know what a job well done looks like.
  • Hire great writers; Respond immediately to people; Say you’re sorry.
  • You don’t create a culture, it happens.

I don’t want to give the whole book away, but REWORK is a great read and excellent way to begin your new year. To order the book and to learn more about John Fried & David Heinemeier and 37 Signals, visit You will not be disappointed.