Rework: Book synopsis

Amina Adewusi
2 min readDec 22, 2018


My colleagues recommended I read Rework to understand their business principles. Overall I can’t recommend this book more highly if you’ve got an idea you’re creating an organisation or business around. Here’s my quick summary.

Do less.

Understand your epicentre — what is the most important thing you have to do? What can you not do without? Focus your energy on making that the best it can be.

Constantly look for things you can remove and simplify. You can always add things back later.

Divide problems into smaller and smaller pieces until you’re able to deal with them quickly

Say no to customers and let your customers outgrow you

Be swift.

Don’t postpone a decision. You can always correct it later.

Launch now. Don’t skimp on quality, but also don’t wait.

Responding quickly is the best customer service

Identify quick wins — this will keep you motivated, rather than super long term projects.

Know what matters

The core of your business should be built on things that don’t change, rather than fashion trends. For example, one of Amazon’s core principles might be fast shipping. This will always remain important to customers.

Ask yourself these golden questions to ensure you’re doing work that matters:

Why? What problem are you solving?

Is this useful? Are you adding value? Will this change behaviour? (Don’t build things that won’t have an impact)

Is there an easier way? What could you be doing instead? Is it really worth it? (Determine real value)

Share everything

Build a loyal audience. You can do this through teaching. Share everything you know. Let your audience see behind the curtain — reveal all.

Show your flaws. Be genuine.

Take risks when no one knows you and you’re at the early stage of your business

Under-do the competition

Try under-doing your competition by doing the simple things really well.

Pour yourself into your product. Competitors can’t copy that. For example, having an obsession with customer service.

Take a stand against your competitors. Say why you’re better.

Don’t focus on your competition

Your day

Have 4 hours a day of alone time when you are not interrupted

Keep meetings to a minimum

Park new ideas for a few days and then revisit them with a cool mind.

Leave work at 5. Having a life outside work means you’re more likely to be effective during work hours.