Could Facebook be a simple collaboration tool?
Email just isn’t cutting it anymore, Asana is overkill for simple projects, how about Facebook?
A friend (with whom I’m working on a project) sent me a link. It looks interesting, I’d like to click on it, but maybe not right this moment. Yeah. So, here’s what usually happens.
- You send me a link.
- I see it (at some point). I’m checking email less and less often these days.
- I may or may not click on it depending on what else I have going on in that moment.
- If I do click on it, I may or may not dig deep into what it is. Probably not. At least not right now. But when?
- I’ll try to remember to look at it again.
- Maybe I’ll mark the email Unread so I might come back to it sooner.
- You write me back asking if I saw it.
- Then I check it out.
- Then I write you back.
- Then you forget what we were talking about in the first place.
Not exactly going to win awards for collaboration efficiency. What’s a better solution?
My teams and I use Asana daily. You can also set up separate “Workplaces” where you and whoever you choose can have a private workplace to share notes, tasks, projects and documents. Awesome possum. But until that potentially possible project with a friend reaches the formal level at which I’d create an Asana workshop. Still, it has lots of collaboration features:
- Projects, tasks, sub-tasks, document attachments, comments, status updates, etc.
- Notifications on assigned tasks, deadlines and updates (even on other’s completed tasks). This is worth its weight right there.
- Awesome mobile app.
The major downside is that your colleagues have to learn Asana. It’s not rocket science, but it’s yet another thing people have to figure out.
Facebook as Collaboration Tool?
What if, as a middle ground between clumsy email and a project management tool like Asana, we used Facebook to communicate? Let’s see what we could do with a Page or a Group.
- Topics as posts. Can then easily keep track of comments, likes. What’s popular stays at the top.
- Very easily share links, which automatically give a preview image, title and excerpt of the link. Big improvement over simple underlined text in an email.
- Most people already have it. They don’t need to sign up for yet another tool they’re rarely going to use.
- Everyone knows how to use it and if they can’t figure out Groups or Pages, you can give them a 1-minute primer.
- It’s free.
What’s to lose? I wonder how much FB keeps tabs on the content flowing through pseudo-private conversations. OK, so don’t work on the latest release of the next iPhone, but for your side project it’s probably safe.
Could Facebook beat out email as a place to collaborate?