Jason Fried on the type of company he’s trying to build, from a recent interview with Fast Company:
Our magazine is called Fast Company, but it sounds like you want to build a slow company.
I’m a fan of growing slowly, carefully, methodically, of not getting big just for the sake of getting big. I think that rapid growth is typically of symptom of… there’s a sickness there. There’s a great quote by a guy named Ricardo Semler, author of the book Maverick. He said that only two things grow for the sake of growth: businesses and tumors. We have 35 employees at 37signals. We could have hundreds of employees if we wanted to—our revenues and profits support that—but I think we’d be worse off.
I like this call to slow down. I’m reminded of Jack Cheng’s recent article on The Slow Web:
Timeliness. Rhythm. Moderation. These things dovetail into what I consider the biggest difference between Slow Web and Fast Web. Fast Web is about information. Slow Web is about knowledge. Information passes through you; knowledge dissolves into you. And timeliness, rhythm, and moderation are all essential for memory and learning.
We aren’t building things—companies, apps, art, relationships—for speed, for the quick result, the right now, because we can. Let’s build slowly, like we’re in it for the long haul. Let it dissolve into us, enriching us all along the way.