Rework – Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansonn – ISBM 978-0307463746
Great ideas and encouragement to break out of the box you are in. I wrote an Amazon review for this book on September 7. I’m reading again now (mid-November). It is that good. Lots of great ideas that apply for a local CPA firm.
From my review at Amazon:
Great ideas and lots of inspiration
Lots of short chapters each with one key idea. Count me as someone who was not familiar with 37signals. I’m a fan now.
Many of the ideas won’t apply to your business. So what was the last business book you read where that wasn’t the case? Some of the chapters may leave you cold. That’s okay too.
That leaves lots of gems. As an intentionally one-person professional firm, here are a few of the gems for me:
Everything is marketing. Every word on your web site, every answered call, even your e-mails are marketing. That is so obvious, yet I had never thought of it that way. After reading the book, I had the idea to rewrite the signature blocks on my email to increase visibility of one line in the block that is directly marketing. (Aha, that would be application of the last chapter – inspiration is perishable – do something while you are highly motivated to get it done.)
Out teach your competition. As a small outfit, you can teach, educate, and help your clients and potential clients easier than the big guys. I recently started blogging as a marketing approach and to help my client base. The out-teach-competition chapter gave me ideas for several series of posts beyond the updates and news I had already planned.
Sell your by-products. The recent blog postings by 37signals is marketing (see above), which is also building an audience (another chapter), and was then turned into this book, which is an illustration of selling your by-products. Great idea! I need to think about how to do that in my firm.
Those gems for me may do nothing for you. Lots of other ideas that didn’t do much for me may be the Aha! inspiration you need.
Be forewarned – the authors sometimes use strong language. They do so to good effect, but if that is a concern for you then don’t say you were surprised.
Additional thoughts as I am half-way through the book a second time:
Most CPAs involved in attestation word would make good teachers. We have the knowledge and we know how to apply that to our client. We just need to take the time to teach. That is a great way to outshine are big-name competitors.
As I think back on the book, and the parts I have yet to re-read, I recall encouragement from several comments to know what your focus is, concentrate on that, and let go of extraneous things.