Behind the Team: How Communication Processes Evolve at Slack

Chatting with Bear Douglas, Director of Developer Relations at Slack

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In this article you’ll learn:

Lifecycles and team evolution

“When it comes to processes, my attitude has generally been that all processes and all meetings have a life cycle. And so we have been through different formats and outgrown different formats over time.”

“With a group that size, you want something that’s not just a status meeting. You also want something that is still primarily broadcast, because 20 people can’t really have a functioning conversation about something. Recently, we’ve used Zoom breakout rooms to have discussions about the presentation in smaller groups.”

How Slack Uses Slack

The Developer Relations team uses the following channels:

Keeping your team aligned

“The top projects list is designed to show that you can borrow time from other teams. If we agree on those top projects that are shipping, we set the expectation that someone might come to you and say, “Hey, I need some engineering help on this,” or “folks on my team don’t have a specific expertise. Can I have some of this person’s time?” It’s a different mode of thinking. Usually if you are under pressure, the first reaction is to ask for more headcount. The new mindset is to think about your team not as three people but as 25 people.”

Growth at Hugo. Previously data science at Squarespace. Writing here now:

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