Email, Slack, and Meetings

We aim to make it easy to communicate with other team members to get stuff done while also facilitating their ability to do focused work and “get in the flow” and get stuff done. Thus, when you need something from a team member:

  • If you need a response within 24 hours, use email
  • If you MUST HAVE a response within 1–2 hours, use Slack
  • [This should almost never happen] If something is absolutely on fire and you need to interrupt their work, go stand at your team mate’s desk (if you’re in different locations, this isn’t possible)

Guidelines on how to use your tools:

Email: Necessary and awesome but poison if not used correctly

  • For most roles, we recommend turning off all email notifications. Check email during scheduled times, plow through it, and get out of it. If something is a task that will take more than 30 seconds, add it to your task list (i.e. Asana, Trello) rather than attending to it right then just because it’s in an email.
  • Break the habit of reading email in real time or frequently — this is destroying your focus time and sanity
  • If you are sending a team mate a resource they need to work on or reference later, use email (not Slack)
  • Keep emails short and to the point (2–3 sentences max)

Slack: Necessary and awesome but poison if not used correctly

  • Turn off all notifications except the count on your Slack icon
  • Break the habit of reading Slack in real time or frequently — this is destroying your focus time and sanity
  • Pro tip: also hide the dock on your Mac so that notification counts on your apps don’t distract you from focused work
  • When you take a break between tasks or to use the restroom, etc., check your Slack count and respond to team mates as needed (this way you are responsive to them without interrupting your own work)

Meetings: Necessary and awesome but poison if not used correctly

  • Any decisions made
  • Any commitments your manager made you want them to remember
  • Action steps and ownership
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