Updated: Apr 4, 2020
As a Product owner in my role, I strongly believe that every feature request, every new task, every issue reported by the customer needs to be well documented. A picture is worth a thousand words. A video clip is worth ten thousand words!
When you're operating on the maker's schedule, meetings are a disaster. A single meeting can blow a whole afternoon, by breaking it into two pieces each too small to do anything hard in.
Meetings and Video calls are great for tasks that require instant decisions. However, most meetings in large companies can be replaced by effective documentation, well-written emails or small visual clips. Today's synchronous (real-time) communication tools and methodologies are increasing your company-wide anxiety quotient.
How many times a day are you obsessively checking your email, or Slack?
How many times a day do you use the phrase "Sorry for the delayed reply..."
How many meetings are on your calendar?
How much time do you waste answering repetitive questions, asked in different formats, by different colleagues, on different communication platforms?
Asynchronous collaboration at
workplace = Happier and Productive Employees!
Async communication is necessary for modern distributed teams. It focuses on making sure that a collaborative task is executed without a lot of meetings. Please do not send one-liner emails or a slack message to report product issues. Create a video clip and highlight the exact issue with all the details on JIRA to avoid back and forth with your team. It takes less than 10 secs to publish a screen clip using Devtendo.
Real-time messaging is for quick updates; as the team grows, it invariably becomes chaotic and shallow. Is your real-time messaging tool preserving history, making it easy to track new tasks or old decisions? How many messages have you missed on Slack today?
Silicon Valley and the culture of having meetings from morning to evening is the top reason why startups have stopped innovating.
We are not producing disruptive technologies. The slow, incremental pace of progress—not to mention the useless social software decade—has pushed us far back in the innovation spectrum.
Here are some instances where async communication tools like Devtendo are going to be useful for your organization:
CEO to HR: "Can we answer 80% of the new-hire questions with already recorded screen-clips, videos, and effective documentation?"
Developer to QA: "Can you please share the exact steps to reproduce the problem? I don't see it on my machine"
Product Manager to Developer: "Can you please explain how to use the new feature. The documentation is not clear"
VP Sales to Customer Success: "Can you jump on a call to understand the customer escalation. Please document all the details and open a ticket"
Developer to Offshore team: "Can you upload the screen clip for every failed test case for the new feature?"
Sales to SE: "Can we send the customer a video clip of the new feature he requested last month?"
While there is no doubt that remote teams will build the future of software, we feel that asynchronous communication is also an important factor in team productivity, whether your team is remote or not. If you are replying to every email and slack message right away, how will you get time to "produce" software?
So how does Devtendo pitch to a person in the Developer role?
Be detail-oriented. How you communicate with the rest of the team drives the engineering culture of your company.
A compass tells you which direction is east or west, but not which direction to travel. Similarly, asking others to report issues is not sufficient, showing them how it's done with screen capture(s) and detailed information will earn you respect.
A 10x developer is an individual who is thought to be as productive as 10 others in his or her field. The 10x developer would produce 10 times the outcomes of other colleagues, in engineering or software design. You can't be 10x, unless you foster a culture of accountability and teach others about effective communication.
Do not accept a new JIRA issue without a screen capture video clip. Ask QA to report all UI problems with a clear description of the issue, all the machine details, logs and a video clip before spending any time on it.
Imagine your nightly automation suite automatically uploading a screen recording of every failed test.
Be 10x. Value your time.
Asynchronous communication is how modern distributed teams will build and support software.
Check out some other devtendo use-cases here:
It's simple. Time is a zero-sum game.
Once you and your teams realize and respect the scarcity of time, you'll all be more productive.
I'd leave you with one of my favorite quotes.