BY YOUNG ENTREPRENEUR COUNCIL
Q: What system do you use to check in with employees as your company gets too large for one-on-one meetings every week?
A: Trello. “I love Trello. It clearly illustrates progression, facilitates communication and collaboration and it’s beautifully simply designed. A call or an occasional one-on-one still doesn’t hurt, but to drive efficiency and results I recommend Trello.” Carlo Cisco, SELECT
Roadblock updates. “Each week, we have an email roundtable where each team member checks in with the roadblocks they’ll be facing one week out and one month out. This helps our growing team understand how their work supports the work of others without tying everyone up in a scheduled meeting that drains time and resources.” Nick Reese, BroadbandNow
Being available. “Nothing replaces face-to-face, but by cultivating an environment of openness, employees are encouraged to come to their manager or to contact me if they have something they need to talk about. I can’t always help, but the chances are that what seems like a big problem for an employee can be solved relatively easily with input from me or other members of the team.” Vik Patel, Future Hosting
DropTask. “DropTask is a great system for organizing projects and task management as well as collaboration between teams. It uses a novel approach by ditching lists for a more colorful interface to organize each project. You can tag specific people to a project and see its progress, issues, etc. in real time. And the best part is that it can integrate with other services like Dropbox, Gmail and more.” Kumar Arora, Aroridex, Ltd.
Leadership and structure. “There are a number of tools that can help you communicate with your team, but there’s no replacement for one-on-one in-person time. To solve this, we have a management structure. Each employee has a direct manager who they meet with for a weekly one-on-one. As we grow, we’ll have more managers. This way every employee gets the support they deserve as we scale.” Bhavin Parikh, Magoosh Inc
Anonymous digital suggestion box. “This allows everyone to give feedback. We also have open-door policies so that, if employees need to connect, they can. Finally, we have set the company up in tiers, so that our management team can definitely connect with each individual, and then connect with us.” Erik Huberman, Hawke Media
Agile planning. “We use agile planning at Ceros. We plan at an executive level, and my team works with other teams to build out an execution plan to meet those goals. Everyone has full transparency into what each department is shooting for. We field a company-wide survey at the end of every executive sprint as well as host a town hall meeting with the entire team every eight weeks.” Simon Berg, Ceros
Weekly team meeting notes. “We use a company wiki to document all of our ideas, processes and product specs. It’s great because it keeps everyone up to date on what needs to be done, you can tag team members on projects that they are needed on, and you can get email notifications of changes made in the wiki. That, paired with a wrap-up of our weekly team meetings, makes sure that everyone is on the same page.” Brian David Crane, Caller Smart Inc.
Asana. “My team uses Asana as our main form of organization and collaboration. With Asana, we are able to share projects, assign tasks, follow progress and comment on each other’s work all on one site. While I still like to have one-on-one meetings with my employees, Asana helps us communicate on daily projects so we have more time to focus on more specialized assignments.” Leila Lewis, Be Inspired PR