Asynchronous communication

In the previous article (“Team’s communication: synchronous and asynchronous communication“) we talked about the difference between synchronous and asynchronous communication. In outlining the advantages, we have drawn some generic lines that we will go into further in this article.

 

What are the advantages of asynchronous communication?

⏰ Time management: in an asynchronous context, employees are left free to organize their work in the most appropriate way. Those who are more productive during the morning can wake up early and dedicate themselves to work; those with a family will be able to devote a few hours to their needs and then go to work; those who are simply more productive at night will be able to work at night. This type of autonomy allows the worker to produce more and be happier! But above, employees are all more involved in the management of the company and more attentive to its results (on this point see the article Team engagement: how to engage employees ✌🏻)

πŸ”ˆHigh quality of conversations: as we said in the previous article, a constant communication flow does not allow us to dwell on the quality of the conversation because it is a type of communication that requires a constant and immediate connection with the rest of the team. These timings clash with the need to stop and reflect and develop a solution that takes into account all aspects of the business involved in the decision. People, therefore, have more time to think about more thoughtful solutions avoiding unnecessary hesitation. For these reasons, asynchronous communication allows you to be more productive (because the solutions adopted are deeply reasoned) and to correct errors in your strategies less (because you are less exposed to risks for having neglected essential aspects).

πŸ›€οΈ All the relevant information is traceable: fast communication means that the rapid flow of messages makes you lose track of the conversation segments that are really important for the business. It has often happened to us to be overwhelmed by the many issues we need to talk about and then lose important pieces of the conversation. For this reason, we decided to include in our dashboard a tool that allows you to correct the distortions of fast communication. Today we can keep track of only the relevant information by avoiding unnecessary flows of thoughts. If I want to monitor the growth flow of social media, for example, with Teami I just have to enter the discussion that I have renamed “Social network – Growth” and immediately check what the numbers are and what the strategies have been applied in a few points and in a simple way with a clear saving of energy and time. All this with the important consequence of transparency and accessibility by the whole team unlike what could happen in a system based entirely on email.

⏳ Time recovery: synchronous communication requires always being ready to respond to the stimuli that other team members send: it creates a sort of “dependence on notification” which prevents us from working in an optimal way. It has often happened to me that at the end of the day I realized that I had simply spent my time trying to answer the questions of my teammates roughly and quickly. Those were days when I produced very little although I had literally spent the whole day working! The psychological constraint of immediate response is broken down in systems that adopt asynchronous communication … since I have all the time to be able to respond I produce more and give more thoughtful answers.

😌 Better planning and less stress. Asynchronous communication leaves time to plan and organize the work with a high level of advance and weighting. Everyone can define their activities well in advance to quickly achieve their goals. There are no particular moments of stress. When we based our communication exclusively on synchronous communication systems, I realized the stress load I had. While I was working I was asked to do something that some other team member thought was more important than what I was doing. And history was repeating itself: at the end of the day I was unable to do what I had to do or what they asked me to do because I spent my time trying to organize the order of execution of the activities.

πŸ“ Deep work becomes the default. A further problem was that of feeling a tipping ball. I felt that the culture of society required a quick response and, even when I didn’t see notifications, I was overwhelmed by the thought that someone was looking for me and not finding me available. This has not happened to me since we have been using Teami because, once I have updated the data and had a brief comparison on the important topics, I know that they can concentrate on the work without anyone being able to resent my absence in the course of a few hours.

🌎 Time zone equality. Asynchronous communication helps the involvement of people who don’t work with our same time zone. Forcing people with a different time zone to have to work at night or to be excluded from the fast communication flow is not a winning choice if you want to build a stellar team. Why give up that brilliant person just because our communication regime requires a constant presence? We have an international team and asynchronous communication helps us to meet the needs of each of us!

 

Build a more asynchronous culture

Like all new habits, the transition from synchronous to asynchronous communication will take some time.

What do we do to speed up this step?

πŸ—‚οΈ Logical Organization. Asynchronous communication requires organization. It is necessary to create a system, usually divided into channels or discussions, which every member of the group can always access. This is a key point because it allows team members to move easily within conversations and this has an impact on their productivity.

πŸ™…β€β™‚οΈ No fixed working hours. Not having a fixed working time allows you to work with people from all over the world.

πŸ—£οΈ Overcommunicate. When we send a message in the conversation we try to insert all the information, avoiding, however, to deal with issues not strictly related to the topic. The golden rule is clarity. You have to write clearly so that everyone can easily understand.

🎯 Request in advance. Requesting certain activities in advance allows others to organize their work and avoid stress. We allow people time to “study” and reason so that they can find the solution. We don’t want an immediate solution but we want a valid one.

πŸ“ Plan a meeting discussion. it is important that during the meetings everyone had time to think about each topic. We have started a specific discussion using Teami so that we can keep track of both the topics covered and those that we will discuss. In this way, the information is shared between everyone and each of us can express his opinion on the topic.

πŸŽ™οΈ Share with those who cannot participate. When we have a meeting, it may happen that someone cannot attend. Our advice is to record the meetings and make them available to others so that they can “attend” later.

πŸ‹οΈβ€β™‚οΈ Train employees to communicate. All humans communicate and due to the fact that we believe it is a natural thing we are led to think that we all do it in the best possible way. What if it doesn’t? We think it is not so. Writing in a simple and effective way is a skill that every member of the group should have.

πŸ₯° Appreciate the work and results of employees. Rewarding employees based on the number of hours or connections held for some time now seems to be a strategy that does not pay (read on Less is more: Microsoft Japan tests the 4 days work week). Making your employees feel appreciated for the results achieved helps implement the degree of commitment and increase the productivity rate.

🌡Bet on trust and build a culture based on the value of reliability. In our previous projects, we have always worked remotely. Based on our experience, we realized that very often the problem is that we aren’t able to understand how much the people who work with us are involved in the project and if the efforts in terms of time and energy are the same for the whole team. Why do I have to work more than another person if we all benefit from the results? This is one of the biggest difficulties a team faces. This is why we thought of founding Teami. In order for asynchronous communication to work, however, you must try to overcome this problem. Monitoring the degree of involvement of your employees and stimulating the growth of a personal relationship between them is essential.

πŸ•°οΈ Setting time expectation. Not being pressured by fast-flow communication mean having no limits. The orderly and constant management of the work requires that deadlines are set. The important thing is to be clear: 1) we must achieve this goal οƒ  2) to achieve this goal we must carry out these activities οƒ  3) these activities must be carried out by this date. Scanning the work phases leaving time to plan and study is really the secret of a winning team. Transparency, then, must concern every aspect. Even in the event that there are delays. Don’t be afraid and plan a new deadline!

πŸ”• Turn off notifications. As we said, we believe that the best solution is synchronous and asynchronous communication management. In order not to allow us to be distracted while we work, deactivating notification is a necessary solution. We plan the work slots: for example, 3 hours of work without distractions and in each break, we reactivate the notifications

βš–οΈ Don’t despise synchronous communication. use it with caution. Synchronous communication does not only have disadvantages (on this point see Team’s communication: synchronous and asynchronous communication). Using tools like Zoom or Slack can prove to be a winning choice. The only thing to do is to establish the necessary balance that there must be in the use of these tools (so remember to disable notifications !! )

πŸ› οΈ Use the right tools. To promote asynchronous communications there are numerous tools. Do not make the mistake of relying on the old e-mail system which is formal and does not allow you to find information easily.Β  Below you will find some information.

Asynchronous communication

Email (i.e. Gmail)

Team Communication Tools (i.e. Teami)

In-App comments (i.e. Google Docs, etc.)


Synchronous communication

Video calls (i.e. Google Meet, Zoom)

Phone calls (i.e. WhatsApp))

instant Messaging or Team Chat Tools (i.e. Slack, Telegram)

 

If you want to know more about how we organize our work (tools, logistics, timing, etc.) or you have additional information’s, it will be a pleasure for us to update our article with your information. Write an e-mail: hello@teami.io. Looking for more information on our communication tool? Discover more about Teami <3

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