Rework by Jason Fried – Summary

Rework by Jason Fried - Summary
Share This with Someone Who Needs to See This

Jason Fried from Basecamp, along with his coworker David Heinemeier, came up with the book Rework in 2010. Rework talks about reimagining the way you work.

If you want to start a business or your someone who wants to change the way you work, then rework is a must-read for you.

37 Signals

37 Signals started as a web design agency in 1999. They took on small clients and decided to build a product to manage them.

They didn’t want to use email and Microsoft project to handle their clients and decided to come up with a software of their own which turned out to be Basecamp.

They had an itch and scratched it for themselves. They didn’t think too much of it, and it eventually took off. Clients loved the software and now it’s a multi-million dollar business.

This way of launching a product normally goes against the grain. You’re often told to find a problem that exists in the marketplace, then come up with a solution.

But What if you need a software, a product, or a service? And if you figure it out yourself, there’s a good chance somebody else might need it too.


Rework is broken down into 12 short chapters and takes only a couple of hours to read.

Remote work right now seems to be the norm, but 10 years ago it was not the case. A lot of companies want the best talent, but they expect them to be next door or within a 10-mile radius.

The best people are all over the world and Basecamp only had a small team of 28 members while they were starting out and they were spread across the world and worked remotely when remote work was not a thing.

Here are some key takeaways from Rework:-

Planning is guessing – Writing a plan makes you feel in control of things you can’t actually control. Sometimes it’s okay to wing it.

Don’t be a workaholic – Workaholics make regular employees feel bad about themselves for working regular hours. It’s not a sign of honor to pull all nighters it simply means you are inefficient. Don’t work more hours, but work better hours.

Scratch your own itchBill Bowerman, the iconic track coach from Oregon, realized his team needed better running shoes as the ones they were using were wearing out easily. He went into his workshop and poured rubber into the family waffle iron and came up with Nike’s famous Waffle shoe. Solve your own problem and people will love with what you’re making.

You need less than you think – when you try to cater to everyone; you end up satisfying no one. Have a minimalist approach often Less is more. If you’ve watched Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmare’s, it’s pretty clear that all the failing restaurants try to make too many dishes and quality is compromised. Trim it down and go niche.

Focus on what won’t change – At 37 Signals the primary focus was speed, simplicity and affordability. 10 years down the line you never go “Man I wish that software was expensive and hard to use”. Remember, fashion fades but features stay.

Something that holds all of us back is the launch date. It’s never ready and we always make excuses to let ourselves off the hook.

There’s never going to be a perfect time to put it out on the market. Once your product or service does what it has to get it out.


Inspiration is perishable. It has an expiration date. If you have an idea, act on it now don’t leave it for later, if you do you’ll never get to it.

Why work doesn’t happen at work | Jason Fried

What you do is what matters, not what you think or say or plan.

Jason Fried, Rework

What are your key takeaways from reading Rework by Jason Fried?

Jason wrote ” Rework” to share lessons he learned while building Basecamp and 37signals. His main message is to work smarter, not necessarily harder.

The following are my three key takeaways from the book:
1) Focus on the things that bring the highest returns. In this world, you don’t need more time, you simply need to focus on the things that bring the highest returns.  
2) If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it. Focus on activities that generate the highest return.  
3) Few people produce great things. You should focus on being a great producer, not on being a great consumer.

What do you think about the book Rework by Jason Fried?

It’s a great book for anyone starting or running a software business, especially those that have some self-doubts or insecurities. This is a great line from the book Business is a constant stream of renewal and reinvention. Change is the only constant so always be willing to adapt.

What is the concept of rework by Jason Fried?

Rework is a book that teaches us how to simplify our business processes. Rework tells us about how to free yourself from unnecessary bureaucracy in your company, how to do business with more passion, and how to respect your customers more.

Jason Fried has also explained how to avoid making the same mistakes that most startups do. This book is not only for startups although the core audience is startups. It’s a book for all of us.

Rework is a must-read for those who are struggling to get ahead in their life and career. It is loaded with insights by Jason Fried which will motivate you to take action and create a company that is your dream job.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top
Open chat
Hi👋, I'm Muthuraj if you have any queries regarding Muthusblog feel free to WhatsApp me!