F.I.R.E. Book Summary - F.I.R.E. Book explained in key points
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F.I.R.E. summary

Dan Ward

How Fast, Inexpensive, Restrained, and Elegant Methods Ignite Innovation

3.9 (47 ratings)
12 mins
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    The F.I.R.E. method gets you high-quality results in the fastest, most efficient way possible.

    When you head a creative project, plenty of challenges will come your way. Luckily, there’s a fail-safe method that innovative project managers can use to stay on track, and it’s called F.I.R.E.

    F.I.R.E. stands for Fast, Inexpensive, Restrained and Elegant. Everyone can use the F.I.R.E. method to improve their processes and achieve their goals.

    Make your project fast by dividing it into smaller tasks that can be completed quickly. Big projects often drag, and sometimes it’s hard to feel you’re making progress. When you design for yourself a smaller group of shorter tasks, you can focus on each task one at a time, and set clear, achievable deadlines.

    This means you have to stick firmly to a schedule, however. And being fast isn’t just about working quickly – you have to focus as well on quality. If you work quickly but sloppily, you’ll only create more work for yourself further down the line. In the end, you won’t really have saved much time.

    Keep your project inexpensive by maintaining a small budget, and aim to solve problems with your smarts before throwing money at them. Inexpensive doesn’t mean cheap, however – it’s about efficiency. Learn to make the most out of what you have.

    Being restrained is about staying in control. When you’re restrained, you don’t allow unexpected circumstances to determine the direction in which your project heads. Instead, you control the situation by holding regular meetings, maintaining short schedules, organizing small teams and keeping a tight budget.

    Finally, being elegant is about focusing on simplicity. Remember: less is more. Simple projects, if done correctly, are better than complicated ones, as they’re easier to work on and ensure high-quality results.

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    What is F.I.R.E. about?

    This book (2014) outlines the F.I.R.E. method to jumpstart innovation, a guaranteed process that will stimulate you and your team by streamlining resources and creativity. At its core, F.I.R.E. is about setting restrictions so you can produce much greater results.

    Best quote from F.I.R.E.

    The most successful project leaders ... tend to deliver top-shelf stuff with a skeleton crew, a shoestring budget, and a cannonball schedule.

    —Dan Ward
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    Who should read F.I.R.E.?

    • Project managers or team leaders
    • Start-ups looking to jumpstart innovation
    • Entrepreneurs seeking the latest in team management

    About the Author

    With three engineering degrees and over 20 years with the US Air Force, author Dan Ward’s expertise on defense acquisition reform has been featured in publications released by the US White House, the US Senate and the British Parliament.

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