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Steal our productivity stack

Steal our productivity stack

Learn how our small business stays organized, collaborative, and on track. 

Over the last decade, the Dirigible Studio, the marketing agency behind our eponymous website builder, has experimented with numerous tools and strategies to improve our team’s collaboration. Through trial and error, we’ve curated a powerful productivity stack that has transformed how we work, enabling us to achieve better results in less time. In this post, we’ll share our top tools and techniques for project management, team communication, file organization, time tracking, and more. 

Whether you’re a solopreneur or part of a growing team, we hope our productivity stack can help your small business succeed.

Project & Task Management

Project & Task Management: Asana

We’ve flirted with Airtable and gone steady with Notion, but we keep coming back to Asana to manage our projects and tasks. Asana lets us create and assign tasks, set due dates, and break down complex projects into smaller steps and milestones. The comment feature allows us to ask specific questions about tasks asynchronously, while the messages window makes it easy to talk about the big picture. 

Its centralized, user-friendly platform keeps our projects organized and on track. It also provides a window into the project’s status and progress for our clients and allows us to all communicate in one place rather than emailing or back and forth. 

Although it can pack a hefty price tag, Asana’s robust features save us time and deliver a huge ROI. 

Team Messaging

Team Messaging: Slack

We use Slack as our team messaging platform for real-time communication and collaboration on quick questions that don’t belong in Asana. 

Slack’s user-friendly interface and powerful features make it easy for our team to stay connected, whether discussing project updates, sharing ideas, or having casual conversations.

We create dedicated channels for specific projects, teams, or topics, ensuring that conversations stay organized and relevant. 

Full disclosure: we also use Slack to goof off a bit. Our #random channel is where our distributed team can let our beautiful weirdness shine.

Client Communication

Client Communication: Spark

Spark is our email client. It has many great features, but its best and most important feature is the shared inbox. By utilizing a shared team inbox, anyone on our team can triage incoming client requests, assign them to the most appropriate team member, and discuss the best approach to address each inquiry. We can add internal comments and notes and even co-draft responses, ensuring we provide accurate and timely information to our clients. This collaborative approach helps us help our clients faster.

Spark’s shared inbox has been a game-changer for us. Before we started using it, emails were siloed in individual inboxes, which meant that if someone was in meetings all day or out on a shoot, our clients’ emails wouldn’t get answered. 

Using a shared inbox allows us to manage client requests efficiently and ensures we never miss a beat. With a complete history of client communications at our fingertips, any team member can quickly get up to speed on a client’s request. This centralized record-keeping empowers us to provide personalized, informed responses to our clients, even if the primary point of contact is unavailable.

File Organization

File Organization: Google Drive

When onboarding new clients, we create a shared drive with a specific folder structure to keep everything organized. This structure makes it easier to search Google Drive and gives every type of file a clear home. 

  • ⭐ [Client Name] Branding
  • 📁 [Client Name] Content
  • 🎨 [Client Name] Graphic Design
  • 👍[Client Name]  Social Media
  • 🏗 [Client Name] Web Design
  • 📊 [Client Name] Reporting
  • 📚 [Client Name] Training documentation
  • 🗒 [Client Name] Meeting Notes & Memos
  • 📸 [Client Name] Photo Library
  • 🕷️ [Client Name] SEO

Within Drive, we use Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides to collaborate on work for our clients. 

Time Tracking

Time Tracking: Harvest

To ensure accurate billing, Dirigible uses Harvest as our dedicated time-tracking tool. Harvest’s intuitive interface makes it simple for our team to log their hours, track project progress, and generate detailed reports for clients and internal use.

With Harvest, each team member can quickly start and stop timers as they work on various tasks throughout the day. The app’s mobile and desktop versions and browser extensions ensure that time tracking is convenient and accessible, no matter where or how we work.

Implementing these tools has saved us time, increased our efficiency, and helped Dirigible Studio foster a culture of transparency, accountability, and continuous improvement. 

We encourage you to explore these tools and find the best combination for your team. Building a productivity stack is an iterative process – don’t be afraid to try new things, learn from your mistakes, and refine your approach over time.

By investing in the right tools and strategies, you, too, can unlock your team’s productivity potential and take your small business to new heights. Start building your productivity stack today, and watch your team thrive!

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