😩 Stop trying to connect Slack and Asana

I laughed when I read “What. A. Surprise.” I feel sometimes that I’m bending over backwards trying to make people comfortable with Asana by meeting them where they are → Slack. But that means no one is getting comfortable in Asana or Asana Inbox. I think a tough conversation is in my future… Thanks for the article!

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I completely agree @Bastien_Siebman! I also recommend against integrating the two.

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We have the integration on only to be able to create Asana tasks from Slack, but it’s randomly used. Not too big of a deal, and sometimes it’s useful.
When to use Slack and when to use Asana… it’s explained in our Asana Conventions.

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Thanks for the testimonial Ignacio. Do people create tasks from Slack for themselves only, or also for others?

1000% All off above!

We really enjoy and heavily use the Slack/Asana integration. So, if you end up having a robust discussion in Slack it’s easy to turn it into an Asana task with person/date/project. (we don’t do the slack notification for Asana tasks and projects)

Problem solved… for us!

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So you really manage to have people discuss in Slack and then report their decisions and notes into Asana? Impressive! :clap:

Yes :smile:
For us, it’s very clear who owns decision-making in different spheres/roles as we operate using Holacracy. We don’t make decisions based on consensus, of course, insight is sought and given freely.

When we have a Slack discussion making an Asana using the integration for the decision-maker “FYI check out topic X insight” or “Read Article on ML” that was shared in our #all_reading channel is a fluid extension of the sharing/delegating that already exists.

Now, if a discussion becomes long and more heated we try to move those to Asana as a Conversation/Messages/Team for the relevant project/role/team. This is because we only use Slack for quick communication and try to keep long-form discussions in Asana where the tasks related to that work actually exist (plus we delete our Slack history after 179 days for privacy reasons)

Another way we use Slack + Asana is to reference the slack URL in the Asana task to provide the context needed for completion.

Key in all this is leaving your ego at the door, and embracing that good ideas can come from anywhere. As such, an Asana task from a random Slack conversation made by an equally random team member just might change your week!

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Integrations provide choice. And for providing choice to my team and peers is important. Not everyone works the same, and for instances where I’ve no interest in micro managing and or being strict on the specifics of a process, totally happy for my team to execute as they see fit or they feel is most beneficial, as long as the output of that choice (In this scenario, Project and Task creation in Asana) contains the relevant detail and quality.

Think in the majority of our userbase they use Asana directly. Some will absolutely use an integration to say like Teams in order to create tasks, or use Task cards as an agenda for a quick meet. We also have some milestones posted to a teams channels. Again, just about choice. I know and they all know they have Inbox, but they might just want to use Teams. I know Inbox wasn’t and still isn’t something I use or value much in Asana, but that is probably down to the culture aspect of our teams not using Asana for communication or conversations, and that I get just get huge spam in there on tasks or projects I’ve no real interest in.

You make some good points, but I think it’s always important to offer the choice. At the end of the day confidence in your platform or your designs should make you confident people will look for bigger adoption and transfer of things like conversations and task discussion out of other areas and into Asana. But that comes with quality designs, features and performance that makes it a no brainer for users to switch or to gravitate towards it.

Agreed, I just feel like many people are just bad at managing their own tasks and following rules, so not offering a choice is a way to make sure things stay on track. I have no doubt many companies are fine with Slack and Asana, but I’d say more than half struggle because people tend to use Slack way more than they should compared to Asana. Thanks for sharing your point of view!

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Yeah I used to have that mindset. I manage some big platforms for a global org.

Problem I’d constantly hit is just people wanting different choices or do it a different way. I’d then have to spend a lot of time or effort, or my teams, organizing workshops and training sessions because as people weren’t following the singular built process, and entire workflow would block or break.

Have found giving options and not worrying about a particular step in a flow, but ensuring the critical components are executed, has reduced workflow blockage and breakdown drastically.

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Very interesting thanks, so you basically let people discuss where they want, but you check whether or not they keep Asana up-to-date in that case?

I haven’t been a fan of slack from the start, but I was on a political campaign who used it, and now I appreciate it. I agree, I wouldn’t connect them, the noise is too great for me as is. Interesting topic.

Also, just for the record, I don’t Slack I use Workplace. That’s for communications, quick and dirty Q&A, but Asana is for work. Tasks, Projects. End of story! :slight_smile:

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Slack is awesome, as I said in the intro, I love it! :heart:

I found this post really validating! Thanks for putting these thoughts down. I’ve been finding that:

  • All integrations have limitations and increasingly I’m finding that programs (Asana/Slack/CRMs/etc.) are getting blurry around their edges - they all do a little bit everything, but not well outside their main purpose/strength - which can be hard to create good, clear conventions around.
  • ^ Further to that, I find the one use of the integration I want isn’t there, and I’ve just wasted time/effort trying to make something work that won’t.
  • Seeing notifications in multiple places is annoying and ultimately means that I/others ignore notifications, which is NOT the desired result.
  • If we let people know these integrations exist, give them the info on strengths/limitations, but do not enforce or suggest they use it, they will use it if it suits their work, and not if it doesn’t.
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Controversial yes - but I tend to agree.
We have only found one use case for the integration that does not defeat the purpose of one or that other - Critical Deadline reminders!
As a training organisation, we manage our assessment marking process through ASANA and have a simple rule setup against the student record to shoot out a reminder to the team Slack channel 7 days out from the deadline “Hey - someone is still waiting on us!” - it’s been a HUGE game changer!
We are seeing reduced timeframes to complete marking AND increased student satisfaction - a win all-round I’d say :partying_face:

Note: Obviously we don’t do it for all due dates… that would defeat the purpose of ASANA entirely.

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@K_Taylor great use case!

Yeah that’s a good summation. I don’t see it as my place to micromanage my team on how they communicate between each other their tasks, works or collaboration. So in my scenario and environment if I’m seeing Asana tasks complete leading to project closure, with good quality and timely delivery, I’m not going to actively chase down where all the communications is happening and how.

If my team flag to me issues with communication, or if I see a trend of Tasks and Projects slipping, or having poor quality and delivery, I then might look into providing guidance or decisions on where collab should take place.

Because I guess it’s at this point I’m looking at the specific communications and discussions. So if I see it spread across Teams, email, Asana and other platforms, maybe then I’d be in the mind to say “Hold on guys, I spent more time trying to find your messages than actually reading them, lets get them all through Asana”

At the moment Asana messaging for us sees a really good use for escalation or grabbing attention. But our teams day to day comms still goes through Teams or Email.

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:shushing_face: Shhhhhhhhh! My team has NO IDEA that Asana tasks can be created from Slack!!! :rofl:

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100%!!!

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@Bastien_Siebman
I found it sometimes is easier to introduce Asana more like a personal task manager. This way, they learn and can be trained properly. I cant stress enough how important it is to watch the instruction videos, then the Asana Academy. My onboarding is now for a team member to “onboard” Asana, instead of onboarding to our company. We now setup a project as Asana training and information use, where anyone can view and discuss on our team. :grinning: Most project members love Asana after seeing how it can manipulate their personal tasks so the whole team can be transparent and on the same page. Are we talking about work or doing work? that was the ongoing question brought up when first training with asana in my group. Which later actually helps prove how useful Asana is in comparison to the others in mainstream like slack.