Friday, March 12, 2010


These boys do things differently and eschew standard business practices. It works for them and it probably can work for others (but not for every business). The 90 short chapters struck me as similar in style and tone to the 81 gems of the Tao Te Ching. But like the pull of the Ying and the Yang, there are some contradictions in Rework. For example, they tell us that immediately starting work on a new great idea is a 'bad move'. Yet the final chapter tells us that 'if you want to do something, you got to do it now."

Workaholism is for chumps, they say, and you should never work past 5:00. But "if you're inspired on a Friday, swear off the weekend and dive into the project." They tell us not to raise money, but they rose money from Mr. Bezos himself.

That said, this is a must read for any business owner. I own a web business and run it much like the writers of this book. Can't remember the last time I had a standard business meeting with an agenda and a powerpoint, and my employees are spread across the globe. I reply myself to customer service issues quickly and naturally, and I keep my product simple. I don't pay for advertising but instead use word of mouth and attention from the media. But this doesn't apply to all types of companies.

It works for small companies who use the power of the internet to maximize automation and who therefore have the LUXURY to eschew the way everyone else does it. But this IS the future of much of the way we will be doing business, and that's why this book is so useful and important. Lao Tzu would be proud.

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