Welcome to the Asana for Nonprofits forum

I’m kicking off this thread to welcome you and allow Asana Together members to introduce ourselves. We’re made up of Asana Certified Pros (consultants), Forum Champions (active here) and Ambassadors (go-to Asana experts for their teams).

I’m one of the first Asana Certified Pros, I’m based in San Francisco but work with clients worldwide, I particularly enjoy working with nonprofits (I’m starting a new engagement with one tomorrow). and I offer discounted rates for nonprofits and do pro bono work as well. I’m also very active providing answers and solutions here in the forums. Click on my picture or https://forum.asana.com/u/lpb/ for more about me.

The best single tip I can offer is:

  1. Click the orange + button at the top of your Asana and choose Project
  2. Choose the Asana Basics Training template and click Use template
  3. Name the project and click Create Project
  4. Take 30-45 minutes to complete your intro to Asana

Another tip: Free to nonprofits (and most others) is the Asana add-on I created called Asana2Go that lets you share your Asana content in other output formats and is kind of a utility knife for Asana. You can learn more by skimming the articles or watching screencasts at:

I think you’ll find the Asana Forum to be a highly resourceful place to be!

Larry

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Welcome, Non-profits!

I have tons of non-profit experience and I can say for certain: I WISH I had Asana when I was starting in the non-profit space.

My tip! My work in non-profits involved recruiting and training volunteers. A great way to keep track of training stages is to create a task with the volunteer’s name and then create a Custom Field to track what stage in the training/onboarding process they are in. You can do that by going into your project and clicking the + sign in the top right corner to add a field. You can then select a Drop Down field type and add all your steps in your training process. As your volunteer moves through the stages, you can update their status.

Once all of your volunteers are assign a status, you can sort by which volunteers are in which stage of the training/onboarding process!

Hope this helps!

Melissa

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Welcome to Asana for Nonprofits!

Since working in Nonprofits can be uniquely tiring, my team and I have learned to really value the little things. So my Tip is to turn on Celebrations! :partying_face:

  1. Go to My Profile Settings by selecting your profile photo on the top right of the browser.

  2. Select “Display”

  3. Check the arrow next to “Show occasional celebrations upon task completion”

The next time you complete a task a unicorn, narwhal or another magical creature might fly across your screen! My coworkers and I call it “flair” and like to see who gets the most in the day. :clap:

Please post in the forum if you need help! We’re a friendly bunch and hope you love Asana as much as we do. xx

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Heya! I work with @Melissa_Dowell & @Dan_Meier at a non-profit that doubles as a higher education institution with several institutes/centers under it. We’ve got a lot going on and a lot that needs coordinating across departments. In August we upgraded 7 teams to business level features and now have 54 users (85% of our administrative staff)! I’ve got a few tips here :slight_smile:

Tip #1: Create your Asana Conventions!
Melissa & I chair a “lead user group” that works on creating & training our Asana Conventions (https://asana.com/guide/team/onboard/team-conventions) This has been a life float for us. Shout out to @Sam_Sorkin for giving us a template project to move our conventions from a Google Doc to an Asana Project. PURE GOLD!

Tip #2: Use Portfolios & Workload to monitor your burn-out radar.
I’ve worked in non-profit realms for my entire career, and the #1 thing I hear (and have experienced) at work is burnout :frowning: Most people in the non-profit sector care deeply about the mission of an institution, and sometimes sacrifice their work (and other) health for the sake of it.

Recently I was feeling SUPER stretched thin (with the accompanying eye-twitch and no-sleep) and that’s just not how I wanted to live my life. My supervisor asked me to create a list of all the meetings I’m in and a list all my projects from high to low priority.

I was able to create a portfolio that included all my projects (including meeting agendas that are projects), add a custom field for priority for each and assess my workload with the workload feature. We continue to assess this on a regular basis together. I’m able to re-assign tasks to my team members and re-prioritize based on my schedule. My eye-twitch disappeared and I’m sleeping better! :sleeping:

This TechCrunch article about Asana’s feature “Workload” is a great thing to check out: https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/01/asana-launches-workload-to-help-prevent-burnout/

Tip #3: Get a discount!
Also, get you a 50% off discount from TechSoup:
https://www.techsoup.org/products/asana-premium-or-business--1-year-subscription-–-access-to-discounted-rates--G-50858--

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Hi all!
I’m originally from South Africa and currently in Boston for a few years. One of my teams are in fact a non-profit and we use Asana for everything. I hope Asana helps you to have less internal emails and get people that work on your cause part time or full time on the same page as it has helped us.

My tip for using Asana:

  1. Turn off the email notifications. help your team to get into Asana and get your notification in their Asana inbox.
  2. Make sure you understand and use My Tasks. Its a hidden gem in Asana and people either love it or hate it (If they do not understand how to use it)

I am an Asana Certified Pro and can also consult in how small teams can leverage the power of Asana for you NPO.

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Hello, and welcome to Asana!

My name is Luke Thompson. I’m a COO from East Tennessee, USA, and I’m an Asana Ambassador.

My tip for introducing any team to new tools, especially something as big as Asana, is to really listen to your team and make sure that they’re not overwhelmed with all of the shiny features. Start with the basics, help them set up their “My Tasks” view and just build from there. :slight_smile:

We’re always here if you have any other questions or need any advice!

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Hi everyone, I’m Jennifer Liu, an Asana Ambassador in Atlanta, GA. I work full-time as Communications Operations Manager at Westminster, a coeducational Christian, independent day school for grades pre-first through 12, committed to creating an educational experience where bright, curious, motivated students who are nurtured by challenge can grow into leaders of conscience.

We’ve been using Asana for about three years in our Marketing and Communications team and about two years in the Office for Institutional Advancement. I’m excited to connect with nonprofits and other schools about their tips and tricks on using Asana for advancement, admissions, special events, and communications. Our communications team uses Asana for all of our projects, including our larger projects like our magazine publication and annual report.

**A Premium Account tip for those who especially have tasks that are often dependent on other tasks first being completed (like for editing/reviewing content prior to the design phase):

Utilize the option to mark a task as waiting on another (with task dependencies option)

Here’s how to mark a task as dependent on:

  1. Click the three dot icon from the right pane.
  2. In the drop-down menu that appears, click Mark as Dependent on…
  3. Next, type the name of the task you wish to be the precedent task.
  4. Select the task in the typeahead that appears.
  5. Then, the dependent task will have a banner in its right pane indicating it is waiting on another task.

A shortcut with timeline: You can also draw dependencies on your Timeline by clicking the connector icon that appears when hovering over a task and then dragging to another task.

We find that this option really helps our editors know when content is ready for proofreading because they will automatically be notified when a story or layout is ready for review (after the writer marks their task completed). :white_check_mark:

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Larry / @lpb
This is great! Learning Asana basic tips while leveraging using templates is a major time saver & double win for nonprofit teams who are just starting out- thanks for sharing!

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@Melissa_Dowell- love this!
Onboarding can be such a meticulous process, which is why making the new hire onboarding template, your own, is so important! I love the addition of custom fields to their onboarding project as a way to keep track.

I’d also add the power-tip of using advanced search to help you keep track of all the new hires at a particular stage of their onboarding, which will help you stay on top of everyone’s progress.

@saractall, I couldn’t agree more!
Never underestimate the positive reinforcement of celebrations to help motivate the team. Gamifying this really takes things to the next level, and creates a sense of community around productivity.

In fact, I have an added recommendation, to help amplify your efforts to rally your team (while also helping adoption around the office)

  • Register for free stickers from Asana to reward those who go above by clicking the following link and register: https://asa.na/sendstickers
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@AshleyWright, these tips are gold! :rainbow:

Setting your conventions is a critical part of setting up your teams for success when adopting Asana. Making sure the conventions are in Asana helps you walk the walk & talk the talk. Plus letting folks know where to find your conventions via Team conversations really helps you spread the word without spamming your peers with mass emails to everyone in your company.

About your second tip tho, this is especially close to our collective Asana hear!t It’s:

  1. The exact reason why we developed this feature;

  2. The kind of feedback our team loves to read and;

  3. Advice/ways to use this feature that I think all our friends in the nonprofit sector would love to have access to & discover!

Thank you for sharing!

@groblerpaul, you’re :100: right!

Since I started working for Asana nearly 3 years ago, folks still are shocked that I still havent received an internal Asana email yet. No one believes me when I say it!

Great tip- thanks for sharing!
:pray:

@Luke_Thompson I agree, this is a stealthy way to get started!

The magic of Asana is that it’s intuitively easy to start out but is powerful enough, that it could get overwhelming if you try to learn everyone all at once. Starting out with your “My Tasks” is the best way to demonstrate what “clarity around who needs to do what & by when” actually means.

Thanks for sharing!
:pray:

Hey @jenniferliu, thanks for this recommendation!

Setting up dependencies is such a critical way to stay on top of quickly moving priorities in campaigns with so many moving parts. Leveraging timeline to quickly make dependency adjustments is a great way to take this feature to the next level!

Thanks for sharing!
:pray:

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That’s definitely a great tip! Thanks for sharing. :slight_smile:

All wonderful tips. Thank you ambassadors and pros.

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@AshleyWright thank you for all these wonderful tips! I just recently became an ambassador and I’m just excited to help my team to utilize Asana to improve our work management and keeping track of all our projects.

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@Michael_A thanks for posting this link for free stickers, I love Asana swag!

I recently became an Asana Ambassador and I’m also in charge of introducing Asana to my non-profit starting early next year. I work for an international development organization, we have 7 offices around the world and our staff speak many languages. In addition to all the great tips shared so far, for international orgs like mine, the ability for users to change their language settings in Asana is a must!

To do this:

  1. Click on your profile photo in the upper right-hand corner and select My Profile Settings
  2. Click on the Display tab and select your preferred language from the drop-down list
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Welcome @DianaCaragan, happy to have you join the conversation with us here!
Looking forward to hearing all about the successes & learnings experienced in your work management and project tracking improvement journey!

Hi @Mia_Velasco, welcome aboard!
Keep your sticker requests coming in, especially for folks all across your international organization! Just refresh the form and submit a new request :heavy_check_mark:

Also, I love this recommendation! While the work you’re engaged in may occur in the lingua franca (or one central language) of your organization, recognizing that in an international org like yours (across 7 global offices!) requires an ability to localize the language of Asana according to your team. This is key. Not just to enhance productivity, but in your international team’s ability for fellow employees to feel comfortable using Asana no matter what their first language is.

Thanks for sharing Mia!

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