To help your team adopt Asana, we’ve analyzed what the most successful teams in Asana have in common, channeled the expertise of our Customer Success Managers, and incorporated proven change management strategies all to craft the “Asana Way of Change” framework outlined in this article.
For maximum success, we also recommend:
- Importing our team onboarding checklist into your own Asana domain.
- Registering for our live training, "Roll out Asana to your team", or check out our self-paced course, "6 steps to rolling out Asana" in the Asana Academy.
1. Answer “Why Asana?”
Before inviting your team to Asana, make sure you have a compelling reason for using it. To help you answer “why Asana?” complete the following exercise.
First, imagine your ideal world where your team is using Asana, and what you’ll achieve. Ask:
- Which goals will Asana help you achieve?
- What will be possible in the future that isn’t now?
Identify pain points
Next, identify the pain points that brought you to Asana in the first place that will resonate with your team.
|Responsibilities are unclear||Action items get lost across email and other tools, and teammates don’t know deadlines or what they're responsible for|
|Collaboration is challenging||Working with different teams is difficult or handoffs are messy between teammates|
|Processes are inconsistent||When you kick off work, you start from scratch or everyone does it slightly differently|
|Project management is difficult||You have systems that are too simple or too complex, which make it hard to plan projects and see how they’re progressing|
Write your “Why Asana” statement
Now you’re ready to draft a “Why Asana” statement using this structure:
“[Team/Organization name] uses Asana to manage [these projects and processes] to alleviate [these pain points] so that we can accomplish [these goals].”
For example: As a design team, we’re using Asana to manage design requests and marketing campaign projects to prevent unclear requests and eliminate duplicate work so that we can hit campaign deadlines, work on top priorities, and prevent team burnout.
Assemble your adoption alliance
Next, get a group of at least three people to form an “adoption alliance” consisting of the following roles:
- Convention-setter—Establishes basic rules about how you’ll use Asana and answers questions teammates have along the way (e.g., a team lead, program manager, or team coordinator).
- Awareness-builder—Leaders who believe in and remind teams of their “Why Asana” goal statement so the team feels bought in (e.g., executives, directors, team leads).
- Asana advocate—Someone who helps the convention setter carry out their work, leading by example, and encouraging and recognizing peers on their efforts (e.g., individual contributor).
2. Discover your now
With a clear reason for why your team will use Asana, now you can decide which workflow, process, or project you want to try out first. A workflow is the process or set of steps you take to get things done, like producing a video or launching a new product. Workflow management is all about building and tracking these processes.
The specific workflow you try depends on your team, but aim to pick something that is:
- Collaborative, involving communication between multiple stakeholders
- Specific with clear goals, deliverables, or a time-bound duration
For inspiration, check out all of our ways to use Asana.
Finally, lay the groundwork for future success by establishing your Asana team structure. Generally, your team structure in Asana should reflect your org chart.
If only one team is using Asana, you can lay out your teams based on verticals, initiatives, or collaborative groups within that team.
3. Create your first project
Make sure to survey your team about how long it currently takes them to complete work, where they’re getting stuck, and the problems they’d like to solve. That way, you can see Asana’s impact and if it’s solving those problems.
As you're building your first project, you'll also want to understand how Asana fits with your other tools, so you can set clear expectations for your team on what kind of work happens where.
Not sure where to start? Try starting with a template.
Invite a small group of teammates to play around with Asana to get familiar with features and recommended best practices. Asana is flexible, so don’t be afraid to try things even if they're not “perfect.”
When you’re ready, invite your whole team and host an Asana kickoff meeting to cover the information from step one and introduce them to Asana and your first workflow.
Download our Asana kickoff deck template by signing up for our Asana team kickoff on-demand training, then personalizing it with touches for your team specifically.
4. Enable your team and celebrate wins
Share our “getting started” resources below to help teammates learn the basics:
- Asana Lessons (15 minutes) to get a quick overview with quick click-throughs of features and examples.
- Join an Asana Basics virtual training (60 minutes) to work with a live trainer and get your questions answered with other customers.
Setting and reinforcing Asana conventions
Some teams hit roadblocks when teammates aren’t sure when and why to use certain features. A teammate might know how to create a task but they aren’t sure when to mark it complete or how to prioritize it. Check out this article for a deep-dive on establishing team conventions in Asana.
Expect and embrace mistakes! Your convention-setter should constructively re-direct teammates when they forget about established conventions.
5. Get set up for future success
Once your team is up and running, continue enforcing your conventions and make Asana the single source of truth for answering any questions related to the processes you’ve built. Some ideas to get you started:
- Set up an Asana project for questions and feedback and check it weekly.
- Celebrate your team’s early victories, big and small! Your adoption alliance might create incentives or celebration systems for learning and using Asana.
- Set up a safe space where people can play with features without fear that they’ll “break” something.
- Try a "day without email challenge" to see if your team can go an entire day or week without sending any email to one another, opting for Asana instead.
You’ll also want to create a plan for onboarding new teammates so they can get up to speed quickly. Check out our employee onboarding template for inspiration and consider integrating Asana onboarding with your general employee onboarding process.
6. Measure and expand use
After using Asana for a month or two, reflect back on what you wrote in section one, and revisit the team baseline you surveyed them about in section two to see how you’re tracking. Ask your team:
- Did we accomplish our original goal?
- Are new processes running smoothly?
- How long does it take to do the same work compared to before?
- How effective is Asana relative to our expectations? Has it solved the problems we hoped it would?
If you’ve been successful and completed your timeline, communicate your wins and progress to your executive sponsors and stakeholders. You can also start adding more processes, projects, and workflows to Asana if you haven’t already.
The learning doesn’t stop here. See how other teams use Asana and learn more best practices with our wide array of resources:
- Go more in-depth with this content in our “Roll out Asana to your team” training or by checking out our self-paced course "6 steps to rolling out Asana"
- The Team Onboarding Checklist is an Asana project template that walks you through each step in this article.
- Video tutorials in the Asana Academy.
- The Asana Academy for in-depth on-demand courses.
- The Asana Community Forum to connect with customers and Asana fans.
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