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Shape Up vs Scrum: 6 Months to 6 Weeks – How We Cut Our Dev Cycle 75%

shape up

From sprints to cycles, and from product backlogs to …well…no backlog at all. These are just a couple of examples of the differences between Shape Up and agile approaches such as Scrum.

But, what exactly is Shape Up? How does it, when put into practice, differ from Scrum?

Our development team here at Process Street recently made the move from Scrum to Shape Up and I asked them how the two compare. This post outlines the key takeaways from the team and takes a closer look at what Shape Up is as a whole.

To jump to a specific section, click the appropriate link below:

Alternatively, to read the whole post – just keep on scrolling. 🚀
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Hyper Growth: The Strategies You Need to Reach Unicorn Status

The 4 Hypergrowth Strategies to Gain Unicorn Status for Your Start Up

Everyone knows that unicorns don’t exist.

Or do they?

The latest findings have reported that there are now over 600 unicorns thriving in the wild. Experts in the field often cite unicorns’ unique capacity for managing hyper growth that’s allowed them to experience such a surge of success.

However, unicorns still face a perilous existence: two-thirds of unicorns never reach full maturity. This is partly due to a lack of sustainable resources in their environment, but with valuations of $1 billion or more, they are also highly coveted by collectors.

Say you want to raise a gangly young foal into a noble specimen of unicorn-ness. Where do you start? How do you make sure your prospective unicorn makes it into that elite one-third of successful hopefuls?

Fortunately for you, Process Street knows a thing or two about unicorn rearing and maintenance, and this post will cover the basic strategies of managing hyper growth for the best possible outcome: a fully matured unicorn.

Peruse the following chapters for the best advice we have to give:

Giddy-up! (Last horse reference, I promise.)
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Logistics & Inventory Management: How To Do it With a “No-Contact” Policy

Inventory Management

This is a guest post by Reese McKnight. Reese is a sales veteran and editor over at JookSMS, a messaging platform for teams and customers. Hailing from Royersford, Pennsylvania, she started out as a sales assistant in local advertising. Her favorite pastime is trying out new cuisines and board games.

Widespread business changes, caused by COVID-19, have affected global trade and supply chains significantly.

Hundreds and thousands of businesses around the world are having to navigate newly implemented no-contact policies for the safety of both themselves and their clients.

What does this mean for logistics & inventory management?

This question, and more, will be answered in this Process Street as we go through the following topics:

Ready?
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What is Cancel Culture? How to Not Get Canceled and Have Everyone Hate You

what is cancel culture

Once upon a time, the word “canceled” was only applicable to objects and things. Like the meeting you didn’t want to attend. The subscription to Netflix or any other subscription-based product. Your favorite TV series (Firefly, anyone?).

But since the mid-2010s, the word has evolved. It’s no longer objects and things that get canceled, but people and companies too.

Kanye? Canceled.

Scarlett Johansson? She’s canceled.

Bon Apetit? Canceled.

Pepsi? Completely, utterly canceled.

The specific reasons why these people and companies were canceled in the first place vary. But it’s ultimately their actions, statements, or sentiments that led them to be canceled by the internet-at-large.

To learn about their missteps — and ensure you don’t go down the same route — here’s this informative, insightful Process Street post where I’ll be covering:

Let’s get right into what is cancel culture and canceling.

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An Insider Look Into How We Built the Process Street Slack App (In 2 Weeks!)

build a slack appSlack has changed the way we work.

From being able to easily stay in touch with colleagues, no matter where they are in the world, to sending important files and docs in real-time, teams can work more efficiently and effectively than ever before.

It’s no wonder, then, that Salesforce bought Slack for a whopping $27.7bn (and just a few months after they invested in Process Street’s very own Series A).

But Slack really becomes a productivity powerhouse when using Slack Apps — additional made-for-Slack applications that can help you communicate, receive crucial information, and complete work faster.

That’s why Cameron McKay, Process Street‘s CTO, built a Process Street Slack App enabling teams to simultaneously superpower both their Process Street and Slack usage!

Sound exciting?

It is.

In this Process Street post, I’ll be discussing why we decided to build a Slack App, how our CTO managed to build a Slack App for Process Street in just 2 weeks, and how you too can install the Process Street Slack App immediately.

Read the following sections to get clued-up:

Ready for a peek behind the scenes? 👀
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Office Hours: Top Tips on How to Create an Effective Open Door Policy for Your Remote Team

Office hours

According to a report given by Queens University, 75% of employers rate teamwork and collaboration to be very important.

Despite this, reports by Globe and Mail and the Harvard Business Review indicate that 20-44% of employees experience workplace communication and collaboration challenges. And if you’re operating remotely, well, these challenges just became harder to overcome. There is a gap between want and reality.

In this Process Street article, we consider how using office hours can close this gap by supporting the effective implementation of an open door policy for your remote team.

Office hours are times in the week managers set aside to answer questions, address issues, and discuss topics with employees. This effectively implements an open door policy, to establish aspirational communication and collaboration goals. An open door policy is a culture that supports complete workplace transparency, communication, and productivity by establishing strong communication channels between employees and their managers.

Today you’ll find out exactly how office hours and an open door policy complement each other – plus top tips on managing your remote open door policy.

Click on the relevant subheader below, or scroll down to find out all.

Let’s get straight to it!
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How to Run Remote Meetings That Don’t Suck

How to Run Online Meetings That Don't SuckThis is a guest post written by Andre Pinantoan who is currently the Head of Growth at AI coaching startup, Fingerprint for Success. He was previously Head of Growth at multiple high growth companies such as Canva.

The COVID-19 pandemic has plunged a lot of us into the deep end, and many people have had to adapt to new ways of working. This includes how to effectively run remote meetings on a regular basis that actually have some productive value.

It’s one thing to hold a virtual conference once in a while. But when it’s one of your primary tools for communicating, coordinating, and just generally getting your team on the same page, it can either be the best thing for efficiency or a complete failure.

Truth be told, research shows that meetings already had a bad reputation pre-COVID. A survey conducted in 2018 with more than a thousand workers in the US showed that one in four people felt meetings are a waste of time. Add to that the “online” factor, and conducting useful meetings starts to get way harder for a lot of people.

I personally felt the steep learning curve during the initial months of adapting to our new way of working. As a team leader, I’ve always felt that being physically present and giving my time to members has been a key way of supporting them. So I had to find a way to channel my presence digitally.

Through these challenges, we’ve learned and adapted. As always, it’s crucial to understand what’s not working and try to make things better. Along the way, we even found some surprising benefits of conducting meetings virtually.

In this Process Street article, I will share the difficulties we faced when transitioning to full-time remote communication and how my team managed to overcome them.

Let’s get started! 🚀
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DACI: Group Decision-Making Made Easy With Our Free Template

DACI: Group Decision-Making Made Easy With Our Free Template

We’ve all been there: an hour and a half into a 45-minute meeting. You’re trying to reach a consensus but as one department makes a suggestion, the next disagrees.

Customer success insists the next product should be geared towards students; sales thinks their parents are a better demographic. Content marketing started out by spitballing potential names until someone brought up the latest Process Street post and they all got sidetracked discussing whether it’s better to use odd or even numbers in a post title. Social marketing is scrolling through newsfeeds and graphic design isn’t even sure what they’re doing in this meeting at all.

It should have been simple: get everyone together, brainstorm ideas, then form a game-plan and timeline to use moving forward. Except no one can agree on anything and, at this rate, the only accomplishment the meeting will have made is wasting everyone’s afternoon.

Group decision-making is complicated. Fortunately, there are processes for that.

You may have already read our post on DECIDE, which is a great decision-making process for individuals. However, what works for an individual does not necessarily translate to a group. In this post, I’m going to introduce you to one of the most popular group decision-making frameworks: DACI.

The DACI (Driver, Approver, Contributors, Informed) decision-making framework is a set of processes geared toward doing just that. As a variant of the RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed) responsibility matrix, DACI’s emphasis on decision clarity for complex projects often makes it the go-to framework for product managers.

That’s a lot of acronyms all at once, huh?

Don’t worry. We’ll take it slow – or you can jump straight to the point:

Let’s get some decisions made!
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Approvals: How to Streamline Decision-Making in Process Street

Approvals

Major setbacks. Lengthy delays. Unnecessary bottlenecks. When important items aren’t rejected or approved in time, progress is halted.

Take the United States’ government shutdown in 2019.

The shutdown meant the U.S. Small Business Administration – which backs entrepreneurs and small businesses with financial loans – could no longer approve loan applications.

The result? Small businesses turned to high-cost, short-term lenders, entrepreneurs couldn’t buy the necessary products their business relied upon, and the delay itself caused widespread anxiety among those who were relying on loans being granted. Financially-speaking, the lack of approvals caused a delay of $2 billion in SBA lending.

At Process Street (if you don’t know our app, it’s state-of-the-art BPM software!) we know how important it is for teams to get items approved or rejected, so that business processes and projects can be completed on time.

That’s why we’ve introduced approvals.

With approvals, decision-makers can give the go-ahead (or rejection) regarding important items, on top of providing any necessary comments.

Manager approvals

Want to know more about this game-changing feature and how it can dramatically improve workflows for your team? Read through the following sections:

Now, let’s dive straight in.

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The Secret to Success: Process Street’s Customer Success Team Tell All

customer success team

I was once abandoned when I was six years old.

We were shopping in a busy department store when I decided to ride the escalator one more time, while my parents kept on walking.

Although I now know that my parents were completely oblivious to my own decision to take a solo trip down the escalator, I’ve never forgotten the fear, anxiety, shock, and anger I felt when I reached the bottom of the next floor down.

I didn’t know where to go, what to do, or how to find them again. I felt lost, uncared for, and cruelly abandoned.

Ok, so I wasn’t really abandoned and I was, in fact, entirely to blame for this incident – but I’ve never felt the same about escalators or busy department stores since. I still avoid both.

I’m sure we’ve all had similar “abandonment” experiences when we were kids, but maybe we’ve had some more recently too…

Feeling lost, abandoned, and unappreciated is the #1 reason customers move away from products and services and is why 52% of customers will never touch a brand again.

Humans are driven by feelings. So if you want the consumer to remember your product or brand, they must be engaged and impassioned by the interaction with your company.” – Inc, Harvard Professor Says 95% of Purchasing Decisions Are Subconscious

Not with Process Street though. Thanks to our customer success team, no customer of ours ever feels lost, uncared for, or abandoned.

How? Let’s find out together as we go through:

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