Calling all hard-core entrepreneurs, the Type A go-getters of the business world. People who feel like they were born to start, lead, and conquer. It’s time to Rework your business.
The book, Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson of 37 Signals, focuses on gutting business as we know it. It underscores why it’s high time to throw out the traditional notions of what it takes to run a business. Then it teaches you how to begin, why you need less than you think, when to launch, how to get the word out, whom (and when) to hire, and how to keep it all under control. Here are the top 10 insights I got from the book.
10 Edgy Yet Simple Statements To Help Your Business Defy The Status Quo
1. Learning from your mistakes is overrated.
What do you really learn from mistakes? You might learn what not to do again, but how valuable is that? You still don’t know what you should do next. Contrast that with learning from your successes. Success gives you real ammunition. When something succeeds, you know what worked—and you can do it again. And the next time, you’ll probably do it even better. Evolution doesn’t linger on past failures, it’s always building upon what worked. So should you.
2. Planning is guessing.
You have the most information when you’re doing something, not before you’ve done it. Yet when do you write a plan? Give up on the guesswork. Decide what you’re going to do this week, not this year. Figure out the next most important thing and do that. Make decisions right before you do something, not far in advance. Working without a plan may seem scary. But blindly following a plan that has no relationship with reality is even scarier.
3. Embrace constraints.
Less is a good thing. Constraints are advantages in disguise. Limited resources force you to make do with what you’ve got. There’s no room for waste. And that forces you to be creative. So before you sing the “not enough” blues, see how far you can get with what you have.
4. Ignore the details early on.
Details make the difference. But getting infatuated with details too early leads to disagreement, meetings, and delays. Nail the basics first and worry about the specifics later. Besides, you often can’t recognize the details that matter most until after you start building. That’s when you see what needs more attention. You feel what’s missing. And that’s when you need to pay attention, not sooner.
5. Long lists don’t get done.
Long lists are guilt trips. Instead prioritize visually. Put the most important thing at the top. When you’re done with that, the next thing on the list becomes the next most important thing.
6. Underdo your competition.
Simplicity wins in a sea of complexity. Instead of one-upping, try one-downing. Instead of outdoing, try undergoing. Don’t shy away from the fact that your product or service does less. Highlight it. Be proud of it. Sell it as aggressively as competitors sell their extensive feature lists.
7. You don’t create a culture.
Instant cultures are artificial cultures. You don’t create a culture. It happens. Culture is the byproduct of consistent behavior. If you treat customers right, then treating customers right becomes your culture. Culture is action, not words. Don’t force it. Like a fine scotch, you’ve got to give it time to develop.
8. Don’t scar on the first cut.
Policies are organizational scar tissue. They are codified overreactions to situations that are unlikely to happen again. So don’t scar on the first cut. Don’t create a policy because one person did something wrong once. Policies are only meant for situations that come up over and over again.
9. Say no by default.
Start getting into the habit of saying no—even to many of your best ideas. Use the power of no to get your priorities straight. You rarely regret saying no. But you often wind up regretting saying yes.
10. Don’t confuse enthusiasm with priority.
Let your latest grand ideas cool off for a while first. By all means, have as many great ideas as you can. Get excited about them. Just don’t act in the heat of the moment. Write them down and park them for a few days. Then, evaluate their actual priority with a calm mind.
Embrace this unconventional wisdom today and go defy the status quo.
Question: How will you leverage this unconventional wisdom to “rework” your business/brand?