Book-Review: Rework from 37signals

The people from 37signals are well known shooting stars in the startup world. Their blogposts are often worth a read and their products pretty well hit the sweet spot. Their latest byproduct is the book Rework. It is a great read especially since all the many chapters are very short and therefore it is a quick read, whenever you have two minutes you are done with another chapter. If you work in a company that isn’t 2-3 years old, I guess things need a rework.

As a product manager of iteraplan (OpenSource EA Tool) within a company that is already in business since 1996, I especially found the following tips helpful:

  1. Start at the epicenter – For iteraplan this is the repository and the powerful reporting
  2. Throw less at the problem – So iteraplan won’t be the full blown overly bloated Enterprise Architecture, Business Process and Project Portfolio tool all-in-one. We won’t be in Forrester Waves or Gartner Quadrants, but probably still the most useful tool in the market.
  3. Focus on what won’t change – Ease-of-use, Quick-start and powerful reporting
  4. Sell by products – Let’s see where this venture of Rework EA will take me 😉
  5. Launch now – see our monthly preview releases and our feedback we gather via user voice
  6. Illusion of agreement – More on that later
  7. Who cares what they are doing? – We rarely watch the EA market, partly due to the fact that we don’t want to be come as bloated and useless, and second because it is a sales person dominated market, so you simply cannot go and get trial versions or try it on the web, which is one of our great benefits of being opensource and giving everyone the opportunity to try iteraplan before they use it.
  8. Let your customers outgrow you – although iteraplan is enterprise ready and in use at big DAX companies, we will always focus on what won’t change (see above) and stay a simple easy-to-use tool. Some experts may miss one or another feature, but don’t expect us to change it all. iteraplan will – hopefully – never become a bloated tool.
  9. Out-teach your competition – we had a successful training course in July and will continue this.
  10. Go behind the scenes – We are pretty industry leading with our Kanban/Lean approach and I gave already talks at two workshops and the next talk will be in October. We will offer more insights into how we are organized and why we do get so many things done in a quite small team.
  11. Emulate drug dealers – try our CommunityEdition and the personal online demo systems now yourself to see how addictive we are 😉

As you can see, Rework is worth a read and – shameless plug – iteraplan is worth a try as an EA tool.

What was the thing you liked most about the book? Biggest insight you gained?


About kvoges

Founder & Father, Corporate & Startup, Product Manager & life juggler -> loving it :)
This entry was posted in EnterpriseArchitecture, IT, OpenSource, startup. Bookmark the permalink.

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