I'd expected a book of substance, and instead I got a book of aphorisms.
As the founder of a startup, I was hoping to get some insights into how 37signals has achieved so much success. I'd hoped for stories and details. Rework consists entirely of grandiose statements ("Don't be a hero," "Ignore the real world," "No time is no excuse") followed by a couple of pages of explanation in large type. In other words, the purpose of the book is to inspire, not to inform.
That's a pity, because Fried and Hansson are smart, knowledgeable developers. They do really good work. I wanted to know more about their process. For instance, Rework advises you to "start at the epicenter" on a new project. That's conventional wisdom among software developers. But the question is, where is the epicenter? How does 37signals decide to start a new project, and how do they identify the epicenter? How do they divide up the work? Those are the kinds of details I'd love to know. I don't need a book to inspire me to start a company. I need a book that will help me to lead my company well.
Counter-intuitivism has never been this appealing or enlightening. Following uncommon, adverse advice and tips normally would seem as crazy talk, but in Rework, the approach and delivered goods are well worth the look on the naysayers' faces when you're successful from heeding said advice. From burgeoning entrepreneurs to weathered corporate managers alike, this book works for either as a new approach to obtaining the same goal: success, and its myriad of definitions … more
Prior to reading Rework, I was unfamiliar with Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson, or their company 37signals. One book, however, provides the reader with the insight into the attitudes of the founders and a basis for the reasons for their success. However, if you subscribe to "conventional wisdom," this book may not be for you. The authors tend go against your experience and what has been instilled into you during your college and graduate work. Nonetheless, this is a worthwhile book, … more
From the opening pages of "Rework' it becomes quite apparent that Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson are not your typical enterpreneurs. As founders of the trailblazing software company "37signals" Fried and Hansson turn conventional business wisdom on its head by pursuing rather unorthodox strategies and techniques. They have little use for planning and detest meetings. They view the world of business through an entirely different paradigm than … more
Business and branding books glut the market. In fact, I have dozens. But the only one that I consider my "biz Bible"? Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, the brilliant founders of 37signals (Basecamp, Highrise, etc.) I read Rework early last year and benefited enormously. Under pressure by co-workers and colleagues to "tone it down" (paraphrase), my intensity and originality were stifled, and the gradual sacrifice to "fit in" within a small niche culture eroded … more
These are the two chaps of 37 signals who started Basecamp and a host of other tools. They were also early advocates of Ruby on Rails. A breathless book that runs through the gamut of pragmatic business advice. You will find your self agreeing with them much more than disagreeing. Their comments on software design ( It should be simple, practical, easy to use but often is not) resonated today as I was running through Microsoft Office 2010. sigh, I can see why Open Office is attractive - Microsoft … more
After the buzz I've seen generated by this book, I needed to read it to find out what it was all about... Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. They are the guys who started the web company 37signals, a company that has found a sizable niche with software products that are simple and basic. There are enough features to get the job done, and no more. In Rework, they share their philosophy on how a company should be started and run, based on how they've run their own company. While I … more
If Joseph Schumpeter were to design a "creative destroyer," he would probably come up with a business thinker who bears a striking resemblance to Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. To me, they seem to be iconoclasts who are impatient to build rather than anarchists whose objective is chaos. They quickly indicate a healthy respect for the nature and extent of difficulty when challenging the status quo. But they are not deterred by that difficulty, as their success with 37signals clearly indicates, … more