7 thoughts on “Why Work Doesn’t Happen at Work – Jason Fried

  • I tend to agree with Jason. I read his book a couple of years ago and a lot of what he talks about resonates with me. I hate going to the office and would rather work from home more often. The office is full of distractions. I don’t feel as if I do my best work there.

    • I assume you’re talking about Rework, Steve? I loved that book. I too appreciated many of the ideas. So much in fact that I bought a second copy so I could cut out some of the art inside for my office wall. 🙂

  • I like the fact that Jason is challenging us as leaders. Makes us think deeply about why we have meetings, bring people together, focus on ‘collaborating’, interrupt others — and thats good. We could probably all become more strategic & thoughtful about the broader purpose of our meetings & gatherings. But, I also believe that it really depends on the context…if you’re an actuarial firm or you’re writing (or breaking?) code, then silence and focus is good – but if you are looking for creative ideas and you would actually benefit from people productively working together – then this makes sense. I think part of the problem is that organizations have swung the pendulum too far into unproductive collaboration. Might just be time to swing it back a bit. Thanks for sharing!

  • I can remember a few years back, when business thought leaders were encouraging us to “connect” face-to-face instead of always via email in order to develop and nurture personal working relationships and to be more collaborative. Now, it seems like we are swinging back the other way…..It all comes down to balance, in my view. I’ve worked from home for the past 5 years and have managed a team internationally. It all worked extremely well and I found, after an initial period of adjustment, that I actually became more efficient working from home where I could be uninterrupted and collaborate via online meetings as needed.

    I think that Jason’s more important point is that managers need to manage in a different way and not monopolize work time with constant meetings just to get updates so that they can provide input, unless it is very directed and specific around problem areas that need attention. This style of management, which is to call a weekly meeting with the whole team, have everyone go through their activities with and update, just to keep the manager posted is a waste of everyone’s time, because while one person is talking only the manager needs to be there. The rest of the team is just bored. How many meetings have we all been in with everyone on their laptop checking email while someone is talking? Having the discipline of short, must have meetings with a specific objective is a key management discipline, and in my view is what managers get paid for…..without that, they should be assigned to individual performer positions.

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