jason fried – rework

jason fried 3 bw
our fav [we inserted school]..
work is where
founder of 37signals:
37 signals site

bif 6: jason fried

Here’s a bit of business advice you don’t hear too often: do less than your competition, spend less money, hire fewer people, work fewer hours and offer fewer features. So says Jason Fried, merchant of simplicity.
yay….  Basecamp, an online project management system,
Fried’s guiding philosophy:
stay small
and keep it simple.
“There are too many options out there, too many features, and too many products that try to do too many things,” he says. “Software has become complex and bloated. It grows for the benefit of the upgrade sales cycle, not the customer.”
There are great advantages to being small because it forces people to focus only on what’s most important, Fried says. It’s really easy to hire a lot of people but then you have to keep them busy. “So you give them stuff to do,” he says. “Unfortunately, most of that stuff doesn’t matter but it ends up getting into your product which makes the product more complex.”

…. “We kept saying, ‘If this stuff is so important, and we spend 50 percent-plus of our time on it, why do we forget about it later?”

You would think, given Fried’s penchant for small team environments that he’s surrounded himself with the most brilliant minds, but that’s not the case. “I don’t advocate building a small team of gurus. It’s more about having a few good generalists. They need to be passionate, motivated, curious and willing to learn. We’re all good at what we do, and we work well together. That’s a good team.”
His independent spirit and willingness to dole out advice, have given the man and his company a cult-like status among his growing group of fans. His contrarian opinions, which include, “kill all your meetings, they waste employees’ time; interruption is the biggest enemy of productivity; all the things you think you need, you don’t,” have helped shape the 37signals brand. With more than 65,000 readers coming to his company’s blog, Signal vs. Noise, it’s safe to say that Fried has hit a nerve.
Sept 15 & 16
man.. i quote him every day – read rework
Jason was at bif6 – wow to that.
i quote Rework daily. (fyi to the people who can’t hear me)
book links to amazon
on the plane to and from Providence (which i fell in love with) –
i read Daniel Coyle’s Talent Code.
[which @kessampanthar recommended to me like a year ago. he recommended that and Carol Dweck’s Mindset. the 2 books i put off till last on my then current list. silly me.]so – my take…
Coyle’s deep practice bleeds of Fried’s rework.it was like – that’s how you do it.
the mash-up for me:
before reading talent code – rework was my play book for making days matter. like i would focus on orchestrating better time slots. (i’m sure a disservice to rework’s intent.)
after reading talent code – rework is the bi-product (as i’m assuming was it’s intent) of my inner emotion (@nabilharfoush) and ignition.so to me – right now – rework is part of the detox (critique requested) most of us need.
the writing lessons begin..
from 2009

  • think about what you really need to say
  • write it in place
  • figure remove what’s non-essential
  • pare it down
  • make sure you’re getting to the point without using terms that require additional explanation
  • rewrite – without looking
  • compare with the original – see if you’re missing anything important
  • wrap it up.

from 2007 write for the reader

one of my favorite stories on Fried:
jason fried interview
this is huge, perhaps ginormous … when asked:

How many employees would stay to work Fridays?
I don’t know.
Because you weren’t there!
We don’t track things in that way. I don’t look at that. I don’t want to encourage that kind of work. I want to encourage quality work.


We don’t track things in that way.

I don’t look at that.

I don’t want to encourage that kind of work.

amazing what even a raised eyebrow can do.
let’s not encourage what we are trying to escape ourselves. no?
jason's site
sept 2014 interview at 99u:
the problem we are trying to solve is not going away – how to make people for effective/efficient together
that chaos is man-made so can be man-prevented too.. (i don’t think businesses have to be chaotic where everyone is sweating… happens often when the goal is to get big fast).. i like to think of business as a long walk rather than a sprint
https://thedistance.com/ magazine highlighting businesses that have been around for 25 yrs or more – celebrating longevity
(paraphrase): rather than equity – money you might get in the future, we think giving current experiences, ie: paid vacations, guitar lessons, … prove to be more valuable to humans/relationships. it’s something in the now. even as opposed to giving money – giving the vacation or lessons is something the person might not do themselves if they were given the money.
basecampapp chip ness

My “Work Can Wait” piece about Basecamp 3 is really striking a chord with a lot of people. Stats so far…http://t.co/13eXUYchk2

Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/jasonfried/status/641978011403874305

Joe Scharf (@joescharf) tweeted at 8:38 PM – 28 Dec 2018 :
Dear #startups, skip the mainstream BS startup propaganda and instead treat yourself to a reading of “It doesn’t have to be crazy at work” by @dhh and @jasonfried (http://twitter.com/joescharf/status/1078857867648688129?s=17)

crazy at work

by jason and david – @dhh



people can’t get work done at work anymore. that turns life into work’s leftovers.


people are working more but getting less done. it doesn’t add up.. until you account for the majority of time being wasted on things that don’t matter


bury the hustle..

the human experience is so much more than 24/7 hustle to the max..

you rarely hear about people working 3 low end jobs out of necessity wearing that grind with pride. it’s only the pretenders, those who aren’t exactly struggling for subsistence, who feel the need to brag about their immense sacrifice


we don’t compare.. the only things we’re out to destroy are outmoded ideas…. the opposite of conquering the world isn’t failure, it’s participation..

mona lisa compare law


do we want to make things better? all the time. but do we want to max ‘better’ thru constantly chasing goals? no thanks..

that’s why we don’t have goals at basecamp.. simply do the best we can on a daily basis

because let’s face it: goals are fake. nearly all of them are artificial targets set for the sake of setting targets..these made up numbers then function as a source of unnecessary stress until they’re either achieved or abandoned..  and when that happens.. you’re supposed to pick new ones and start stressing again..


plus, there’s an even darker side to goal setting. chasing goals often leads companies to compromise their morals, honesty, and integrity to reach those fake numbers.. the best intentions slip when you’re behind..


the opp to do another good day’s work will come again tomorrow, even if you go home at a reasonable time – don’t change the world..


when you stick w planning for the short term, you get to change your mind often

bravery to change mind


nothing looms when you don’t make predictions

predict\able ness

much corp anxiety comes for the realization that the company has been doing the wrong thing, but it’s too late to change direction because of the ‘Plan’.. ‘we’ve got to see it thru’ .. seeing a bad idea thru just because at one point it sounded like a good idea is a tragic waste of energy and talent..t

the best info you’ll ever have about a decision is at the moment of execution..  we wait for those moments to make a call


requiring discomfort/pain to make progress is faulty logic… no pain no gain ness

discomfort is the human response to a questionable or bad situation, whether that’s working long hours w no end in sight, exaggerating your business numbers to impress investors, or selling intimate user data to advertisers.. if you get into the habit of suppressing all discomfort, you’re going to lose yourself, your manners, and your morals..

being comfortable in your zone is essential to being calm


where else can they find uninterrupted time? it’s sad to think that some people crave a commute because it’s the only time during the day they have to themselves..t


productivity is for machines.. not for people..t

norton productivity law

when people focus on productivity, they end up focusing on being busy..t

kierkegaard busy ness law

it’s perfectly ok to have nothing to do.. if you’ve only got 3 hrs of work to do .. then stop.. don’t fill your day w 5 more just to stay busy or feel productive.. not doing something that isn’t worth doing is a wonderful way to spend your time


if you don’t own the vast majority of your own time, ti’s impossible to be calm


the presence prison – how do you know if someone’s working if you can’t see them.. same as .. how do you know if someone’s working if you can see them?.. you don’t..



eliminate 7 of the 12 things .. it’s not time management, it’s obligation elimination.. t

obligation.. irrelevants

peter drucker: ‘there is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all’

drucker right things law


we rarely have meetings at basecamp, but when we do, you’ll hardly ever find more than 3 people ..any convo w more than 3 is typically a convo w too many people..t


as it turned out, tripling the entry price worked out great. we gave up some new signups, but we more than made up for it w the higher price. that’s what we were aiming for



you’ll often hear that people don’t like change, but that’s not quite right. people have no problem w change they asked for. what people don’t like is forced change – change they didn’t request on a timeline they didn’t choose.. t


every new version was better.. but we never force anyone to upgrade.. you can use 2007 version forever..


you can either choose to take the token that says ‘it’s no big deal’ or the token that says’ it’s the end of the world’ whichever token you pick, they’ll take the other

arguing w heated feelings will just increase the burn..


as we continued to hear fellow entrepreneurs reminiscing about the good old days, the more we kept thinking. ‘why didn’t they just grow slower and stay closer to the size they enjoyed the most?’.. there’s a bunch of business-axiom baloney like ‘if you’re not growing, you’re dying’.. says who?