Rework Book Summary – Are you ‘working’ correctly?

By Shawn Dexter / March 25, 2017

Rework Book Summary

In this Rework Book summary, we highlight the business philosophy of the founders of Basecamp. Jason Fried & David Hansson don’t hold anything back while they make the argument that most companies are doing it wrong. This Rework book summary will list the major ideas with a short description.  The book is filled with sentiments that may either inspire or anger. But will most definitely make you reconsider how you "work".

 The authors put their money where their mouth is and take a no nonsense approach with this books. The book is “to the point” and has no fluff whatsoever. If I could quote the entire book, I would. As such, I will keep to the spirit of this book and keep this Rework Book Summary concise.

Rework Book Summary

Less is more - Avoid Featuritis.

Struggling to keep up with your competitor on features?  Don’t try to out-feature him. Instead try to “out your features”. Offering less features will lean out your product — making it simpler and more attractive. True innovation starts with saying ‘No’ to all but the crucial features. You can compete by offering less clutter. Let your competitor fall into the trap of ‘featuritis’ if he wants to.

I explained  the perils of Featuritis in this Animated Video . Watching it may just save your product from disaster 🙂

Pick a fight -  Stand up for something!

Nice guys finish last. Make a noise. Stand up against the big guys. Having an enemy allows you to instantly position yourself in the customer's mind. People don’t buy features. People buy feelings. When you stand up for something you believe in, you are able to tell a story. Stories evoke feelings. Feelings sell. When entering an existing market, pick your enemy and deliver a clear marketing message. Customers love to pick sides - make it easy for them.

‘Growing’ the company isn’t a KPI. Stop boasting about it.

‘We’re growing rapidly’ is a common boast amongst startups seeing success. ‘Growing’ usually means ‘hiring’. A smart business person knows that you don’t hire more people until consumer demand calls for it. But for some reason, we have perpetuated a notion where the size of a company is some sort of KPI. If you’re company is profitable and sustainable, be proud -- regardless of whether your company is big or not.

  And For f***  sake... Don’t celebrate Workaholism

Workaholics aren’t better employees. They are problem employees. Workaholics produce low quality work while making the rest of the employees feel guilty.  As a result, the overall productivity of the entire business plummets.

Workaholics aren’t heroes — the real hero is the lady who figured out how to finish her work by 5pm so she can be with her kids. When a real emergency occurs, she’s the kind of person you want around. You will notice a recurring "no bullshit" theme in this Rework book summary - and that's largely because the author's don't tolerate bullshit.

Rework Book Summary: Final Thoughts

 Rework is a fearless book that will make you rethink the practices of most businesses today. If you’ve been questioning how people ‘work’, then this book will help reaffirm your ideas. This Rework book summary should be enough to get the major points through to the reader. Would I recommend this book? Sure - every time you doubt whether you're working efficiently, pick up this book (or this Rework Book Summary 😉 )

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I hope you enjoyed this Rework Book Summary!  You can pick up Rework from Amazon in hardcover, Kindle or Audiobook format 🙂

Also, checkout the DIY-MBA Reading List ​to pick your next book! (and for more book summaries!)

Rework Book Summary
About the author

Shawn Dexter

Shawn Dexter is a Product Manager, Entrepreneur & Software Developer. He is passionate about innovation management & technology.