Book review Traction Get A Grip On Your Business
Overall I think the book is direct and practical. I felt like reading a programming language book with lots of “Howtos,” except that it is about management and business. The 4th Chapter, The people’s content, got my attention especially. It does build an exciting framework to find the right people. The author highlights a few characteristics that seem to identify great professionals, to list the ones that got my attention, “
- Unequivocal excellence
- Honesty and integrity
- Hungry for achievement
- Is enthusiastic
- energetic” (Read the book for the complete list, I liked all of them)
The books seem to connect with other books I love, for example, in the quote “Bigger isn’t always better,” the author mentions a Good to Great quote that seems a lot like the reading basecamp in “It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work.” I agree with all these authors. We don’t need to hit a billion dollars organization. For example open-source companies, one of my professional references is a Brasilian developer called Jose Valim, the creator of elixir, today he runs Dashbit, a four people company, I follow him on many talks and podcasts, he always happy and calm, he works in most of his time on open source. They focus on problems and projects they want to work on rather than just focusing on how much money their company makes. Elixing has a significant impact in the community already, and they are capable of running their company and sustaining the ecosystem.
I remember 11 years ago when I started my business. I wanted to keep it small. We managed to keep it small up to this day (today, we run it with like five people, and only two are technical). I think this is the best way to approach a corporation, and any organization I run in the future will try to keep it as small as possible.
The books are entirely focused on how to run a company and things to do to get your business on the right track. Today most of the book ideas won’t be practical to me since I am working on my company only part-time, and in the principal job, I am more deeply focused on technical problems than business problems. On the other hand, one tip I did like and that I will try to incorporate in my weekly schedule is the “Take a clarity break”, “Great leaders have a habit of taking quire thinking”, I do like to do this every once in a while when debugging a very complicated problem, I like to disconnect for a couple of hours and get my mind into different things. Going to the gym helps me get my mind out of code, but separating a time in my weekly schedule to think quiet will help. I always work on my projects during the week, for example Nun-db, and it does help me keep my productivity feeling and to keep my mind close to the low-level coding. My goal is to try to incorporate a fixed schedule to work on Nun-db or other experimentations, disconnected from my main workstreams, my work, and my own company. Let’s see how it helps with the different aspects of my work. As recommended in the book, I will spend this time out of my office in a coffee shop close to my house.
The book was a recommendation from Radical’s CEO for recommended it to, and I don’t regret spending time reading it. Although most of the book’s tips and recommendations, I don’t see a direct application on my day to day, on the other hand, the reading is quite interesting and sound like good strategies and approaches for business problems, of course, the author makes it sound like “silver bullet” and of course it is not like nothing is. Still, I think it is an excellent tool to have on your business tool belt. I’d recommend it to everyone who likes business approaches.