Asana ♥: share gratitude and enthusiasm with your team

Jack Heart

At Asana, we spend a lot of time trying to build towards the future on top of robust technology. But helping you do great things is about more than the software we build; it’s also about the humans who use the software. When Asana does its job, you just feel like a team. You’re excited about the work that you’re doing, and you’re inspired to work together. These ingredients are essential in accomplishing your ambitious goals.

During a recent hackathon, a few collaborators and I set out to promote more energy and team connection through a familiar tool: the “like” button. Building the functionality was the easy part, but we spent extra effort to make sure we were adding warmth to Asana without sacrificing productivity. We think we’ve risen to the challenge.

Over the last few months we’ve found Asana a more gratifying place to work. Now, we’re excited to share that experience with you.

Introducing Asana Hearts

Today, we’re launching Hearts in Asana, a great way to express enthusiasm, offer agreement and share gratitude with your teammates. Here are a few ways to ♥ tasks, comments and attachments effectively with your team:

Share Gratitude

One of the great advantages of productivity technology is that it enables people to work without having to meet in person. However, eliminating these face-to-face interactions can dampen your team’s ability to appreciate each others’ work. People can start to treat each other like robots rather than humans.

With Hearts, it couldn’t be easier to connect as a team. When someone completes a task, just click ♥. The person who completed the task will receive an Inbox message letting him or her know how much you appreciate the hard work.

Move Forward Effortlessly

While participating in an important decision, it can be tempting to create a nuanced, multi-paragraph response when all you really need to say is “Yes!”. Streamlining communication is essential to driving towards consensus and action.

♥ someone’s comment to express whatever positive sentiment you need. Whether it’s “I think this is a good idea” or “Yes to your question” or “Wow, I’m impressed”, you can let your heart speak for you.

Find Your Team’s Passion

We’ve put a lot of effort into making sure you’re successful at breaking down your projects into concrete steps, scoping and prioritizing those steps, and ultimately achieving your goals. That’s just part of being successful. It’s just as important to determine what you should be working on. What excites your team is an important component of answering that question, but information about people’s excitement levels can be hard to collect and synthesize, and so it can go underused.

Now, hearts can surface your team’s excitement in an easily scannable way. Simply create a project and suggest that your team members submit ideas and ♥ the tasks they think contain the best ones. Once everyone has expressed their sentiment, click “Heart” in the “Sort By” menu to bubble up the top-ranked options. If people follow the project, they can continue to express their enthusiasm over time as new ideas get added.

Hearts at Work

At Asana, we believe that people can accomplish greater things by working together than they can by going it alone. Asana is designed to make working together effortless and rewarding, both individually and collectively. Fostering connections within a team is central to that goal. Asana is software that recognizes we are all people, even at work. Too often, business software is not humane. We hope to change that, building software from our hearts. We hope you ♥ our work.

(Fun side note: Asana co-founder Justin Rosenstein led the “Like” project at Facebook.)

  1. Pingback: For its latest feature, Asana founders return to their Facebook roots | PandoDaily

  2. avatarAndrew

    I am an asana pro customer and I am very disappointed to see the wasted effort applied with this enhancement. Asana is a very useful tool and can always improve – although we look forward to functional enhancements and more stability rather than the “feel good” / “everybody gets a trophy” reassurances of a like button. How many resources could have been applied elsewhere to provide more usability (perhaps administrator like permissions)?

    1. avatarJeff

      How could you view this new feature as “wasted effort”? Besides the explicit use case given as a voting functionality, a team that can express gratitude, appreciation, and quick feedback is pretty core to making a team work well together. The Heart feature is another data point to understand how a team shows appreciation for tasks, deems what is important, and communicates.

      I think this is a great feature that will not only let teams function better, but to feel more appreciated, all key to getting shit done.

      1. avatarDarren

        I agree with Jeff. Having an easy way to acknowledge people and their work is one more way to reduce friction in geting our projects done. For me and my team, this certainly fees like an enhancement, not wasted effort.

    2. avatarTevya

      I literally just commented to my business partner (on a task) 3 days ago about this. I said that I wished there was a “like” feature to let him know when I’d read his comment or whatever, but there was no real reason to actually make a comment. We agreed we’d always read everything that came through out Asana inbox, but this adds additional surety. I love it. I’m so glad they released it. It’s very timely for us, since I was just wishing for it 3 days ago.

    3. avatarPaul

      So disappointed. I’m a pro customer and this does nothing for my workflow or alleviate any of my frustrations with this product.

    4. avatarPeter Venero

      It’s about promoting and encouraging great work and recognition to your teammates. I think this is absolutely valuable because it promotes a healthy morale within an organisation and on specific projects. Andrew take a breath – it’s thinking like that which keeps the workplace boring and ineffective, which is why awesome professionals jump ship to somewhere more meaningful.

      Well done Asana!

    5. avatarSteven T

      On one hand, I realize Asana needs corporate clients to pay for the product (they get the say). On the other hand, it’s said to see such negative response. Can anyone explain to me how it is un-professional to tell your team mates that they have done a good job? The hart icon maybe a bit inappropriate, but it’s implemented in such a subtle way that it’s not obstructive at all. I ❤ this feature. Thank you Asana.

    6. avatarAlan

      To those who say Asana should have spent their time on something else:

      A: This code was written at a hack-a-thon. In my neck of the woods, hack-a-thons happen after hours, usually over beers.

      B: By Jack’s own admission, “building the functionality was the easy part.” Translation: minimal engineering effort was needed. My guess: they finished it at the hack-a-thon in a couple of hours.

      C: The “extra effort” they spent “adding warmth without sacrificing productivity” was likely in design answering questions like where should the button go, and what should it look like. Not a lot of engineering effort there.

      D: One of their founders worked on the Facebook Like button. So, duh! It was going to happen.

      Anyone who writes software for a living knows that occasionally adding a simple feature dreamed up by one of your engineers (in their spare time, no less) will go a long way toward their happiness and productivity. If people think their ideas are not being heard, first they stop sharing them, then they take them somewhere else – especially at startups, where there is always another offer a phone call away.

      I commend Asana for letting their geeks actually contribute to the product. I wish all companies were as progressive about project management as Asana.

      Oh, and for the record, ditch the heart. It’s too intimate. High 5 works. Iconography might be an issue. Perhaps stars are easiest.

      And, PS: Until I read this blog post, I thought hearts were a way to vote things up in priority. I guess not. But, that’s still a useful feature. (See https://www.dropbox.com/votebox.)

    7. avatarJohn

      I know exactly what Andrew is talking about. Sometimes it seems like the 20 somethings today are still in preschool. Even design is like preschool story books with huge text and simple words.

  3. avatarNick Smith

    “People can start to treat each other like robots rather than humans”.

    …so you introduce an interface element that further sanitises what would otherwise be a nuanced situation-dependent positive expression? The logic doesn’t flow for me.

    I’m honetly curious, how do you stop this becoming yet another interface element to skip over?

    I’ve been really positive about previous improvements, but not getting the logic behind this one just yet.

  4. avatarAndi

    Feature? Is this Facebook now? Still waiting for e.g. Android App….
    When one of my team members has completed a job with a good result, I talk to him directly.

    1. avatarChris Durham

      MyAsana for Android works great. The main problem for me using the webapp in NYC is that I capture a lot of GTD stuff when I’m on the subway with no connection. MyAsana solved the problem

  5. avatarBlake

    Not even a customer or partner of the company, so I have nothing invested in them, but to be honest in regards to the negative comments, I can’t imagine this feature cost the dev team an arm and a leg to develop.
    And little reminders of appreciation don’t hurt anyone. I don’t see any indication that they’ve gone overboard with it.

    1. avatarJack V.

      Whiners would you like some cheese to go with the hearts? Come on I doubt the developers used up that much development time to put out this little bonus. I think this is kind of cool. Some of the best (and happiest) productive teams I’ve worked with were the ones that were shown appreciation so this helps. However,…. as other users have mentioned, not too crazy about the heart icon. If not a ‘thumbs up’ how about a ‘hang loose’ icon? as in I approve this comment, task etc?Just don’t get it mixed up with the .Satan worship’ sign. And..THANKS for your hard work. Looking forward to some enhancements and these little perks also.

  6. avatarMel T.

    I like the idea but I think the terminology could be better. A simple “Like” would’ve been more appropriate for the workplace.

    A heart implies “favorite” while a Like seems more casual.

    1. avatarAllison

      I agree with your suggestion. Although positive reinforcement and praise for good work is great, a heart does seem a little to “lovey-dovey” for the office. When a team mater accomplishes a goal you wouldn’t say “I love you for filing those documents”.

  7. avatarAaron

    I’d prefer if our project management tool focused on the PM’s priorities, not what items the team “likes” most.

    This feels like a waste of time, if not harmful.

    1. avatarTyler

      I feel like your icon of a headless suit is rather appropriate for your response. Asana empowers the doers of the tasks to collaborate *with* a PM, not under. Strong work environments have two directions of communication, not one.

        1. avatarMax

          I’m not sure about the good ol’ US of A but here in Britain this has gone down ‘like a cup of cold sick’.

          I like the idea of a positive feedback loop but… hearts? It’s appalling, really truly appalling. I’m responsible for rolling this out in the organisation. The reaction to this has been hilarity. I’m trying to get people to take it seriously, to use it as a real work tool, and this is a cheesy gimmick, and makes it easier for people to dismiss the whole system.

          Please, replace with something vaguely professional.

          (Or is it April fool’s day? Is it actually a joke?)

    1. avatarLisa

      I concur. I feel weird clicking on a heart with something work related. High 5 or something that is not so huggy feely at work. It’s almost creepy.

    2. avatarLes Dossey

      I’m with @MrGrillet and while you are at it how about a high 5 button for the comments section of the blog so that we can high 5 the great comments

    3. avatarShane

      Agreed. This is creepy.

      Also agreed: I hope it didn’t take very long to develop. Seems like there are some very requested features that many of us would “like” to see a lot more than an “I LOVE THIS TASK!!” button.

      Sigh.

  8. avatarJay

    I don’t think hearts are appropriate in Asana. There are so many more enhancements that I have been requesting which will actually bring Asana to a mature stage of development. This is regression to me!

    Please reconsider.

  9. avatarChris Durham

    I think it’s a good feature. I understand why it’s useless to a lot of people, especially those doing traditional project management. But less traditional groups will benefit quite a bit.

  10. avatarAndrew

    I like this dialogue…

    I assume the “against” crowd comes from corporate/profit-driven work spaces (no pun intended).

    Those for it probably wear jeans and crack a beer at five (agency life).

    general consensus = not the most useful feature to all. We all want to see continued improvement. Heart -> probably not the best way to go in terms if iconography.

  11. avatarminarad

    As a really heavy user of Asana, seeing this kind of feature makes me question your priorities. Is this a feature that genuinely promotes the usability of Asana?

    I work at a startup environment, not some 9-5 corporate culture and this really doesn’t help me at all. Outside of improving speed, which would be the single most important thing you could do and major product features like search and permissions, here are the 10 small things (small being as best as I can judge) that would actually be useful to me:

    1. go back to showing names instead of profiles (half the people in our organization don’t have profiles and similar initials so it’s impossible to tell who’s actually responsible in that tiny little picture)
    2. add bullet points in notes
    3. use tags as a workflow for bug tracking
    4. add a dependency as a link to another task
    5. drag and drop to attach a file
    6. don’t make me have to select twice to attach a file because i don’t use dropbox
    7. show how many tasks there are on a project
    8. show how many tasks there are under a heading
    9. cache users in the @ dropdowns because they’re so incredibly slow to laod
    10. let projects be organized under folders.

    1. avatarPaul

      Totally agree. How about these:
      - Allow me to set a task to something other than “complete” (return to originator for verification for example).
      - Make it more difficult to edit certain fields. 10% of all changes are mistakes.

      so many more. I would be curious to know whether the asana team uses their own product for internal task tracking. My guess is no.

      1. avatarCharles

        Another nice feature would be able to set viewing of archive between two dates or “last few hours” or something. We have been using Asana here since launch and if you click “view archive” it take a good 10 minutes.

      2. avatarWendy Kinney

        Yes please to options in addition to the checkmark for “complete”.

        Delegate and forward are taken care of by the assigned to and date due features – alI I need is
        – a dot, for waiting, meaning I’ve started something and am waiting for someone/something else before I can continue.

        And, I think I’ll use the heart, once I get used to it.
        So, thanks for the stretch.
        Still, I’m +1 for replacing it with a high five icon, or a star.

    2. avatarKenny Van Zant Asana Team Member

      Hi Mina – great feedback.

      Many of these are also things we’re working on. But we spent a small amount of time to ship this feature after we found that it had a pretty profound effect on our speed & connectedness. Many of these things are also great ideas, and we appreciate you taking the time to spell out your priorities so clearly!

    3. avatarDmitri

      My list:

      - App iPad version (currently in iOS app store is iPhone version, which I need to stretch in order to use entire screen)
      - Ability to edit comments (error happen all the time)

      When visiting Asana from mobile device, we are presented with mobile version, which is kind of limited, for example things I miss from it:
      - Can’t edit/rename Workspaces
      - Can’t use People tab in a Workspace
      - Can’t edit Task descriptions and set task’s due date.

    4. avatarLisa

      I would also like a better filtering system. Filter by a certain name or assignment….we don’t need hearts, I need organization and also to color code things would be very useful. It just feels like a big blah when I’m on here. If I could use color coding, I would know exactly what area I want to focus on and not just a sea of baby blue (hurl).

    5. avatarShane

      Ditto ditto ditto ditto ditto ditto ditto ditto ditto
      to #s 1-9. (Well, not so much to #2, but definitely to the others.)

      Please?? :)

      1. avatarCharlie

        Two I’d like to add:

        A field for time to complete

        A reporting mechanism so I can get a pie chart of which projects took the most time (assuming there is a field to track time), a task breakdown by tag and project, etc. Reports that can be exported or printed.

    6. avatarAJ

      Agree minarad, all the items mentioned are much more important that the ♥. Asana should focus on things that are going to keep people using it or it will go away. Performance is a big one. As more people use it and more gets added it just gets sloooower.

      Now that we have the feature lets spend some more developer time to create the configuration screen to change the icon to something more approriate like a thumbs up or + sign.

  12. avatarJoel

    It’s a schtick folks. Tomorrow is Valentines Day. So they took a small amount of effort to add a simple and playful feature with a love theme. I can’t imagine they spent half the time developing and implementing this as what’s been spent typing up the negative feedback.

    I for one like the fact that it allows our team to indicate something as read/understood/approved/etc without cluttering the comments with yet another comment and timestamp.

    1. avatarminarad

      Cutesy valentine’s day features are all well and good when you build a free consumer product. Developing a feature is one thing – there’s time and effort spent in designing it, deploying it and maintaining it. When you’re a paying customer for a product that is supposed to improve your company’s productivity, it really makes you question the use of engineering, product and design resources towards something “fun” and “cute” when there are clearly defined problems that are hard to solve, but important to solve.

  13. avatarKarkuvel

    I would say this feature is not a BARE NECESSITY, of course it helps to be appreciated, I think the logo shoult be a smiley or a Clap, this logo more or less looks like Valentines day special, I feel it should be more proffesional and not too much importance to be given to this, cos asana is used in your workplace and you dont want people competing for likes.

  14. avatarRonni Engelhardt

    Really don’t “like” this feature. This is not Facebook.

    It should be possible to remove this in the workspace settings. I don’t like seeing hearts every where in asana.

  15. avatarNick

    Corp guy here… in the middle of trying to sell our org on this tool. Do ♥s help me? Given our culture, unfortunately no. They make asana look less professional.

    Maybe you could give us admin a few icon options that we could replace ♥s with? I can easily sell it as a voting feature.

    Maybe you could make it an optional module that we could turn on and off based on context?

  16. avatarNiclas

    <3 it! Simple as that… Luv it! Shows too that you guys probably have a great time at work. And that's why some others do not get it. they simply do not know the power of love or have never experienced it. Or, they are all accountants… ;)
    Happy Valentine to the whole of Asana. Best loving (cant say f*cking, right!) collaborative task manager I've ever had the pleasure to try. So many GTD's have been thrown away by me. This isn't just about GTD, it's about collaborativ GTD!

  17. avatarPaul E. Ester

    Guys, this is a silly feature. Why would I want to “like” a task? Asana is not Facebook. You’re going to make it harder for your evangelists to sell this through to professional teams as a clean, professional tool.

    As you add more features, the interface is becoming more cluttered. This doesn’t help. At least give us the opportunity to turn this silly heart thing off.

  18. avatarJB

    I love what you’ve created – however you have proported your mission to be facilitating communication to get great things done. I’d say this ‘heart/love’ icon actually stops authentic communication, just as the ‘Like’ button on Facebook keeps people from needing to have a real human interaction. I’d love more features that make real interactions seamless, instead of features that avoid conversation.

    It’s ironic that one of your co-founders product managed the ‘Like’ button. This is the first Asana feature I went looking for a way to turn off.

  19. avatarMike

    Agree with many of the other users. This is an unprofessional feature, not particularly useful for most environments, and makes it harder to sell using this as a project management tool for corporate use. We need it to help get things done, and this is more “cute” rather than anything else. Can we have the option to disable it?

  20. avatarfrancoisinjapan

    New user and already evangelist. Working in a relaxed startup setup…

    The heart is A PROBLEM.
    - Not looking professional at best.
    - hopefully I do no have cute ladies in my team… but I let you imagine the problem.

    We are missing and offline module, a tablet interface for meetings, far mor than that…

  21. avatarAndrew Nedelchev

    I like this feature. Thanks for introducing it!

    No, it’s not as essential as many others but is nevertheless helpful. And I don’t find it frustrating communication. By the way, I’ve never found the LIKE in Facebook hindering good communicators from really communicating.

  22. avatarJoshua Millage

    Thank you corporate people for helping me realize that I am not built for corporations. And thank you Asana for a cool feature that makes this product a little more human.

  23. avatarNathalie Lussier

    I LOVE this! Especially that it dropped on Valentines Day. :)

    Thank you Asana for bringing the love back into business. If we’re not operating from a place of love in everything that we do, then honestly I don’t think we should be doing it.

    This is going to make my interactions on Asana even more amazing.

        1. avatarSteven T

          So hearts are for the gay and wimp and batons are for real men? And all this has little to do with humanity? Cowboys don’t need Asana anyway.

    1. avatarTania

      Nathalie, I agree!
      Can’t believe how many people got so angry with a little heart.
      Although I too have a list for EVERY product on earth, this one is one of my favorite ones. Not everything is about features.
      Those guys proved to be hard working and truly caring about their customers so far.
      It made me smile, thanks Asana ♥

  24. avatarJennifer

    I think this is a fun and useful feature, but also agree that a “thumb’s up” or something similar would work better than a “heart” in most work environments.

  25. avatarCarlos

    I cannot begin to tell you how much this feature has disappointed and irked me. Most professional environments have to maintain a precarious balance between professional and personal relations among the persons working in them. Confusing those two is the source of some of the most vexing problems in work environments. You don’t have to like the people to work with them or to recognize their professional worth. Your “heart” feature manages to reinforce the confusion by collapsing the difference between professional recognition and liking someone. With this feature you have undermined the professional standing of your product in one fell swoop. Those people in my company who have been resistant to using Asana can now point to this amateurish, touchy-feely, “feature” as a sign of the immaturity of the mindset behind it. I really hope you will roll back this sophomoric idea that someone should have quashed while in development.

    1. avatarEve

      Carlos,

      I too have had a hard time convincing others of the professional value of a tool like ASANA. However, I find that it is their ‘old school’ way of doing business that is in my opinion holding them back.

      ASANA is definately a ‘new school’ tool; for better or for worse.

      I was very resistant to using emoticons, MIcrosoft offers some ‘smileys’ in my office communicator that took me a long time to use. (I definately did not want to be taken less seriously).

      But I have now given in, because I understand the power of efficient simple ‘gimmicky’ communication.

      ASANA has real potential. I am excited that they are incorporating new school social networking techniques–> Let’s see how this changes business(Keep what works)….

      And no one forces me to add a smile at the end of my sentences. I can be as dry as I want to.

  26. avatarBettina

    Fascinating to see how many people think a heart is unprofessional. I do not work with any company that doesn’t have a heart somewhere in their DNA and isn’t shy expressing it.
    We’ve got a long way to go to bring the heart into companies, this is just one tiny step, thanks Asana.

    I would be willing to bet that after a while of getting used to it, those people who’re screaming so loud today will be happily using it in a couple of months as their own heart has found its way into expressing itself. Although I guess in some cases nothing will ever.

    Very glad I’m working with people who love showing their love for what they do, even in a ‘dry’ productivity tool. It’s one more major reason I LOVE Asana <3

    1. avatarScott

      Bettina, I think you’re drawing a false conclusion. Do you really believe that the carefully thought-out arguments against the heart have all been written by people whose companies “don’t have a heart somewhere in their DNA?” That’s a bit absurd.

  27. avatarMark M

    It’s amazing to see the misery expressed at such a small but significant gesture. Is it designed to be an improvement? No!! Are the folks at Asana working to make a great product?I bet they are.

    Thank you Asana for this gesture and continue to have your hearts in the right place as well as working hard on a great product.

    Cheers!

  28. avatarMichael

    Great feature, don’t listen all these whiners. But yeah, there’re so many features still missing… Please, focus on core functionality of web-version. Some comments in this thread give really great insights about what we want :)

  29. avatarAron

    Hello all.

    This has been a risky move from Asana and I appreciate their courage to implement it; especially after seeing how much responses this “innocent” feature has got – it proves for itself what a fantastic way it is to superfast research your market and get clients’ true and exhaustive opinions without spending fortune on research/surveys…

    So this move seems risky but also ingenious!

    Also, Asana seems to have come closer their own true style and way and despite their perhaps natural inclination to satisfy everyone – you must decide narrower for your client segment. As the proverbial “Jack of all trades, master of none” implies to focus one’s actions around their values and mission so that they can center around specific customer segment and prioritize their efforts in satisfying those needs. When your ideas or will try to stretch and reach a different group with different set of expectations – this is a great opportunity to diversify your product, creating a new one, outsourcing it or outselling it for profit and benefit to all.

    Once again, I am proud seeing all of this happen and send my appreciation to Asana’s team for implementing this brave move. Also I wish you more and more of similarily couragous decisions in your future endeavours thanks to which you’ll have created a true quality product from which you and quickly after you, your clients, will fully be proud of. This is (software) business the modern way indeed.

    Good luck,
    with regards,
    Aron

  30. avatarLionel

    A bit silly I think… Please concentrate on the job at hand, I love Asana but wish I could used it to automate more tasks, I would like to create workflows that are assigned to various members of our team that when the task is completed it could for example fire off an email, alert the next person that the task has been completed and that it is their turn to do the next task, I would like it to work with our CRM solve 360… Actually truth be told I would like Asana to BE our CRM…what about that!
    Keep up the good work, but hearts we can live without…I would much prefer to go and tell my employees what they do is great.

  31. avatarMike

    Please look at gmail as an example of how to make this type of functionality properly. There you can select a variety of icons to correctly tag an email.

    A part from that if I can “heart” a task, why can’t I do the opposite? Why only a positive vote? What if I don’t like the result of someone’s work?

    Please spare us the positive team psychology and make an objective tool that is open and customizable!

    Our hospitality business is filled with love and joy, but I want my business tools to express the reality of the task at hand.

    The negative goes with the positive, you can not separate them. What business has succeed with only positive commentary?

    I agree with the negative comments here that say this is more Facebook type of functionality, and something that will make me run for the hills if I sense Assana is going further in that direction.

  32. avatarJeremy

    Dislike this update. Our organization would benefit from more crucial features of project management and API.

    With the amount of feedback here in these comments, is it enough to reconsider an ability to turn the feature on and off for a workspace? Consider paying customers and the fact that most are in business work environments with other co-workers.

  33. avatarErico Vieira

    Friends, we would like to share with you that we dont like this idea of ‘heart’. The idea is good, but not the symbol of the heart. We prefer the familiar hand used in the others softwares and programs.

    Hugs of our team.
    Erico

  34. avatarTerry

    I just wanted to say I actually like this feature and am looking at incorporating it into our workflow.

    It is a great easy way for myself or others on our team that need to give approval of a task or indicate that it has passed QA without actually marking it as complete (since it won’t be fully complete until the feature is launched).

    Although I agree with one of the people above. A “High 5″ button would have been sweet.

  35. avatarLeonardo Dario Perna

    First of all this feature was developed during an hackathon so it’s mainly “for fun”. Said so, I’m gonna join the “moaning train” anyway and request:

    1. @tags for non-US keyboard (Europe is kinda of a big deal guys…)
    2. A trash-bin (I needed to contact the customer service to recover a task)
    3. The UI coupling between the button “Today” and “Due date: Today”
    4. Be able to undo “Today” button once pressed

    Keep up with the good work! <3

  36. avatarKaren B.

    I added my first <3 this morning! I think this will be a great feature to acknowledge some completed tasks. Keep the good stuff coming!

  37. avatarScott

    We thought this was a Valentines Day joke.

    Our team is very disappointed by this update. It may seem like a minor change to some, but it makes us feel like Asana does not understand us at all (or that the philosophy behind Asana is not what we thought it was).

    Asana is a beautifully intuitive tool, with an interface design that is second to none. Warm fuzzies and Facebook-type functionality have absolutely no role in a beautifully intuitive tool. I never imagined that the Asana team would think it was important to empower its customers to “sort by hearts.” (I cringe just writing that.)

    And it doesn’t matter what kind of work environment you’re in, as some have unfairly suggested above. We’re a design firm, and have a very relaxed work environment. We *tell* each other when a job is well done. We don’t need to heart it.

    Asana—if you insist on maintaining this feature, please allow us to turn it off. You are alienating a significant proportion of your user base, most of whom are so enthusiastic about your product that we actively market it for you.

  38. avatarJesse

    Why do we have this, but we completely lack a distinct feature for deliverable milestones, or some semblance of a burndown graph? Or task dependencies?

    I assumed this was a joke for Valentine’s day, but it turns out that it’s supposed to be taken seriously? I’d much rather see a ‘personal priority’ for each person on each task, so each person can rank tasks by how important that are to them. That way, tasks that matter a lot to multiple people could be prioritized higher than low-hanging fruit has less of an impact.

    It would be GREAT to be able to manage deleted tasks too. The UI isn’t always exactly what I expect it to be, and accidental deletions happen sometimes … with no obvious recourse. It’s a huge disruption to our workflow.

  39. avatarAndrew Petro

    There’s something wrong with this sentence:
    “Over the last few months we’ve found Asana both a more gratifying place to work.”

  40. avatarMichael

    I agree with Erico and Tony. It’s a great idea, but the heart symbol itself is not work-appropriate.

    Some symbols you might consider:
    - Thumbs up
    - ‘+1′
    - smiley face
    - ‘Nice!’
    - ‘Great!’
    - ‘Kudos!’

    I realize it looks bad for you to retract a feature you’re excited about, so how about adding in one of more of the symbols I recommended and let users choose how they appear in the UI?

    This feature supports a laudable goal, so please keep tweaking till it’s perfect!

  41. avatarColin Matthews

    As someone in charge of a small startup team, and as someone familiar with the give and take between UX and utility, I have no complaints whatsoever. I think my team will benefit from this feature, and I’m sure many others out there will not. No, this doesn’t assist “traditional” PM substantially, but I think “Traditional” PM seems to be a bit of an antique notion. I think we can assume that the Asana team is cooking up some more hard-hitting features as well, but the small stuff is important too.

  42. avatarChristine

    Maybe instead of a heart icon, it can be a thumbs up icon. That would be a more neutral way of letting someone know they did a good job without possibly crossing the line. You never know when someone might claim sexual harassment.

    1. avatarJames

      @Christine: Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.

  43. avatarBenoit

    I am happy that my workplace efficiency will go up because I have an easy way to gauge my group’s priorities via vote. And guess what, it’s a heart. Big deal. If you see this as a challenge for your business and not a major upgrade you’ve got much bigger issues.

  44. avatarGinny

    Thank you for the heart! At the core of every project, you gotta have heart, right? Lighten up everyone and remember that “work made fun gets done.”
    If you find it a nuisance, then ignore it; if it works for you and your team use it and enjoy it.
    I love ASANA!

  45. avatarCharles

    You know when you’ve been seeing someone for a while, and they seem really great, and you both seem to just get each other? Then you’re out to dinner one night and they do something that’s just so completely out of character that it makes you wonder whether you really knew them at all?

    Asana did Hearts. (And broke mine.)

    1. avatarDrew

      At least Valentine’s Day candy is on clearance, so your company can drown its sorrows in high fructose corn syrup and saturated fat without breaking the bank.

  46. avatarMelissa

    I love the feature. As was pointed out earlier, we are often working with workgroups spread around the world. Speaking to everyone who does a great job directly, while an admirable goal, is simply not practical in every situation. I would also point out that this feature in no way precludes you from commending a colleague directly; it simply gives you another way to do so.

    Great work, Asana…god forbid we (and your team) have a little fun along the way.

  47. avataralex

    Asana is a business tool, not a social network.

    I’d much prefer Asana to create a better mobile app (esp that allows you to take notes, add tasks etc while your iPod/iPad is offline), as opposed to adding a like button…

    1. avatarSteven T

      Everyone has got a long list of what they want – easier said than done. And what’s wrong with a business tool being a little more human? Why are millions of businesses are jumping on Twitter and FB and not stick to their boring corporate tones on their own websites? Time has changed my friend.

  48. avatarmichael

    If you don’t “heart” this update, then don’t use it. Is there anything worse than the “I’m disappointed in your priorities as a company” type of post. Gee, thanks dad.

    Fact of the matter is that not every Asana user is a hardcore afraid-of-the-heart-symbol-because-it-makes-me-feel-stuff kind of productivity machine. I have a dozen people on my staff who I need to get a yea/nay from, and this is a solid way to quickly convey it simply.

    I like it.

    1. avatarJeremy

      Sounds to me like any icon then would work just as well for you. I think what most everyone here is saying is that the heart icon will make us NOT use it. The function is fine. Just replace with a thumbs up, +1 etc…

  49. avatarDrew

    What I’ve learned from this discussion:

    If anyone finds that your product doesn’t fit their workflow perfectly, adding a new feature is proof that you don’t care about your customers.

    In this vein, I’d like like to complain that holding down the spacebar does not cause my computer to overheat. Get with the program, Asana.

    http://xkcd.com/1172/

  50. avatarPeter

    Professionally speaking, a heart is simply the wrong icon to use in a business setting, as I would think it would make my staff feel uncomfortable. A high five icon (or something like this) is more neutral and appropriate.

  51. avatarBrad Kynoch

    Asana, perhaps you could add the ability to “Turn ON/OFF hearts” per workspace? This would make the heart-haters happy enough to buy you some time to sort out these comments and figure out what to do.

    I agree with switching from a heart to a “high five” icon.

  52. avatarOwen Jones

    I don’t like this hearts idea at all. It’s completely inappropriate for a work environment. It’s fine that it works in your own company, Asana, but why foist it on all your customers? Just simply give us the option to turn it off.

  53. avatarNick E

    My people are going to kill me if I switch to another thing podio looks good. I don’t like the hearts. The icons should be customizable so I can replace the heart with pictures of my baby, if I ever have a baby.

    1. avatarPeter

      I don’t have to try it for a month to know that it is inappropriate for my public relations firm. It’s not going to work for me. Sorry.

  54. avatarDishearted John

    What I would like to share is not hearts, but my tasks off-line, have them on my Android, sync them everywhere.
    What I would like is to add some tags on my personal projects.
    I can’t add a tag to my personal projects, but I can heart them. Is it just me that thinks it is weird to heart your own personal tasks?

    People in my startup can share love with each other, but they would like is to share their tasks with their devices and use them offline, and combine asana por personal and work use, with some tags. And a bunch of other features that are sorely missed.

    Say what you want about the hearts, love them or not (personally, just think they are silly), there are things that by far would be a lot more useful. And given it’s a productivity tool… erm… You do the math. Gonna go like something on Facebook now.

  55. avatarMartin H

    I can see the point in the feature, but like others, I’m not keen on the heart. I use Asana along with a couple of colleagues, but we are trying to persuade a reluctant (slightly technophobic) boss to adopt it more widely and officially. The heart is a step backwards for us in this process; if my boss sees it, he will just use it as another reason not to take Asana seriously!

    Please, keep it business-like and productivity focussed. I’d vote for a “+1″.

  56. avatarAndy

    I work for a large company and I have been evangelising Asana within my organisation. Hearts will not form part of any recommendation I would make on Asana adoption – I would be out of my mind to even show that concept to a senior colleague. I don’t think any sensible manager would argue with the concept of rewarding effort. But I think that recognition needs to be kept outside of Asana. I regard Asana as a business tool for organising workflows, project management and resourcing. Clean, straight lines. I can’t stress enough that the benefit of Asana is in achieving business goals, what happens to get the box ticked. There are lots of other ways of showing employees we care about them. But the point of Asana, in my opinion, is being the best thing for the important tasks where the competitive options in project management are less compelling. Bringing in hearts (or smilies, or other touchy feel elements) obscures what Asana is really all about. It makes the system seem frivolous, lightweight and (for me) a bit cheesy. To date, I really like Asana for its clarity and focused design and I really would ask the design team to re-consider how they want to be perceived and whether this kind of functionality is moving you forward.

  57. avatarThales

    Since this awesome tool is focused for tasks management. Something more professional than a heart would be better, i believe.

    This is not facebook. this is a tool for working, and if someone needs some kind of recognition the payment on the end of the month its not good enough ?

    1. avatarBrian

      Yes! Thank you!

      My co-workers don’t need another thing to waste their time using and checking. “Ooooh so-and-so heart’d my task completion! I’ll heart their their work too! tee hee.”

      Asana is to keep people working on tasks according to time, not socializing with co-workers in some new age team/trust-building nonsense. Do your job and don’t be an annoyance to those around you.

  58. avatarChristiaan

    Unwanted. I’d just introduced my director and co-workers to Asana and the last thing I needed while trying to promote adoption was some gimmicky social media feature and a dedicated email with love-hearts introducing it on valentines day.

    My vote would be to remove it. It’s feature bloat.

  59. avatarAnthony

    You guys really should improve the iOS Asana app – it is rather useless/in-efficient right now. Also, getting an Android app up would be great too.

  60. avatarEB

    A couple of thoughts.

    1) I don’t think you can classify this addition as wasteful. True, the heart as the icon may not be the popular choice. But, I think it is being missed on the different ways you could use a feature like this, like voting, gratification for geographically dispersed teams, etc.

    2) You have to applaud any company who hosts these hackathons. As a consumer of the company’s product, you are ensuring that they have happy employees AND you are essentially getting something extra all the time.

    Good job Asana.

  61. avatarJeremy

    I don’t feel that it is a complete wasted effort but a HEART? I am not sending my developer or a client for that matter a heart…. What in the world is wrong with a like or a thumbs up?

  62. avatarJeremy

    WOW…. just reading through some of the correspondence here. It seems pretty overwhelming people do not like the heart. The idea isn’t bad… It is in fact quite normal in this type of application. But it appears my-self as well as the VAST majority of users are not a big fan of the heart… This isn’t a dating site… I agree, lets keep this business oriented… Nothing wrong with a like, +1 or thumbs up. A thumbs up says Good Job! A heart says, I love you… just weird

    If my dev sent me a heart it would just be plain awkward…

  63. avatarRSDA

    It’s disappointing to see that Asana has been so responsive in the comments section of their other blog posts, but that they have not posted a single specific response to user comments on this long thread since putting up the post seven days ago.

    It seems that they’re just waiting for this to blow over, in spite of the fact that these “hearts” are obviously a big problem for many users and Asana evangelists. As evidenced by the original post, they are clearly smitten with hearts within their own organization. That doesn’t mean that it’s the right thing for their customers.

    Asana—your users would like to hear your reaction and plans.

  64. avatarRegan Perry

    Seriously,
    Telling asana that they can’t implement a Hearts feature because it’s a waste of time, is like telling them that they shouldn’t have ‘wasted time’ on designing a logo, or colour scheme. I highly doubt that they dropped the ball on all future development so that all Asana staff could focus exclusively on this little feature.
    We all want new features, but guess what – you signed up and paid for the *current* feature-set (which you liked at the time), just like the rest of us. Acting like that now entitles you to set their priorities is ridiculous. If you don’t like it vote with your dollars.

    1. avatarChristiaan

      Waste of time? That’s not the complaint. The complaint is that it’s been implemented in a gimmicky way at best and feature bloat at worst.

    2. avatarChristiaan

      And really, spare us the neoliberal dribble about voting with your dollars. No software developers work in isolation from their customers, without listening to their feedback. Not those that still exist anyway.

  65. avatarJeremy

    we are all business people. Should be business like. This isn’t a dating site… It’s ok Asana just admit the mistake… We still all LOVE you. ;o) see weird… We still will give you a thumbs up though ;o)

  66. avatarDean

    I have no problem with the idea of “likes” or “hearts”, yes there are a few features I would have liked to seen first (Like Due Times) but I am sure they have multiple “projects” on the development plate. If they really want to look to take comments to the next level I think what squarespace has done with there implementation of a Question & Answer Page is great. (http://answers.squarespace.com/) They use a heavily customized version of a third party commenting platform (sorry forgot the name) but it is a great system and allows others not only to comment on Questions & Answers but also vote them up or down and also like (with hearts).

  67. avatarDave

    The feature itself is great. A high priority? I’d say not, but I’m sure you’re all working diligintly to get other features implemented.

    I wholeHEARTedly agree, however, that the heart image/icon/ascii sends the wrong message and does not look or feel right in our instance of Asana.

    High-5 is a cool concept … or how about a thumbs-up… a star? ANYthing but a heart. Maybe to be cute and festive, you can change the [insert new icon here] for a heart on Valentine’s Day, or a firework on Independence Day (US only of course). A heart just does not send the right message when used in a professional or corporate environment.

    Perhaps even roll this into an admin feature – choose one of several different icons/images/ascii to represent ‘like’ in your instance of Asana.

    Keep up the good work! I’m available if you’re hiring ;)

    <3

  68. avatarDavid Escalante

    I didn’t know there where so many a**h***s using Asana.

    I guess work puts way too much pressure on you people, you may consider other job.

    I don’t know about all you but I love my work, and this feature is nice around my coworkers who share the same feeling I do.

    You may not act like robots, but act like idiots, which could be worst since you chose be that way.

      1. avatarKenny Van Zant Asana Team Member

        We’re going to move to a new blog template sometime soon, so we will likely add this feature then. Thanks!

  69. avatarMark Chimes

    I have been developing software for over 30 years, and making a living out of it for the last 25 years. There are some things I just do not understand about all this.

    Firstly, if the rate of additional new features is anything to go by, there must only be a single developer actually writing code part-time at Asana. I work in a very small 2-developer company and our output is some orders of magnitude higher than what we see from Asana. (And our products are mission-critical database enterprise-level business apps).

    Secondly, if it takes so long to actually get through the list of customer requests, why on earth would you spend time on a non-essential ‘fun’ item when you could easily knock off a couple of the more important items in the same time?

    if Asana is actually going to make it into the space where it is permanently viewed as a professional product, a humble response over this issue will be essential.

    1. avatarKenny Van Zant Asana Team Member

      Thanks for the comment – and sorry that we disagree so much on the value of this feature. As we said in the post, this was something we developed during a hackathon, which surprised us with its utility, so we decided to push it to everyone. The feature has personality, but it’s not just for ‘fun’, as we said above. Sending gratitude for a job well done is something we think is important to any good team. Doing so in Asana is an “important” feature to us.

      We think you’ll also be surprised by its usefulness. But if not, it’s also a very unobtrusive feature that you certainly don’t have to use.

      Also, if you haven’t seen it, check out our “Product Priorities for E7″ post, a few before this one for the details on some of the other things we’re working on!

  70. avatar200 Fathoms

    Mark, totally agree with your last comment. I can’t understand why no one from Asana has commented on this thread, with all the feedback.

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  72. avatardataphile

    Unexpected rewards stimulate dopamine release.

    Dopamine plays a major role in the brain system that is responsible for reward-driven learning. Dopamine has many functions in the brain, including important roles in behavior and cognition, voluntary movement, motivation, punishment and reward, … mood, attention, working memory, and learning.

    <3

    1. avatar200 Fathoms

      Methinks the Facebook Generation is getting a wee too much dopamine.

      And what happens if I unexpectedly fail to heart your completed task? “He didn’t heart my task! I’m sad!”

  73. avatarWebhoo

    Yahoo, Facebook, Trulia, Zillow, etc. All have “like” feature…you can thumb it, like it, thump it, boost it, (with the beat of that techno song out a few years ago I cant remember the name of). Do you bitch to google when they make their landing page logo relate to whatever is going on that day? Where is the outrage to them about spending their time on a better search than frivolously wasting time on silly designs you may not like?

    Asana is a great product and unless you pay for it (really pay for it not the measly monthly) then STFU and get back to work cause your employer is wondering why YOU are jacking around making useless and unfruitful comments on forums.

    All this todo about nothing. If you commented negatively or contemplated the universal ramifications of a heart versus whatever you look ridiculous.

    1. avatar200 Fathoms

      It’s interesting that most of the nasty and childish comments in this thread are from people who love the hearts. They feel the need to lash out at others, but they apparently also need need hearts, too. I cringe to think of what their work environments must be like.

      The owner isn’t wondering, dude—I am the owner. Of a groovy little branding firm. Quite a non-stuffy, non-corporate work environment. We don’t need hearts. We need a clean and professional task management system.

      1. avatarWebhoo

        pssst….branding boy with no avatar (branding 101)…you missed the real points of what I said and tried to create a straw man so its easier for you. Hopefully you don’t treat your business like you did evaluating my post or you WILL have an employer. Maybe Asana is not working for you because like your reply to my post you don’t read well. We have many team members across the globe and we do much more with Asana than anything so far.

  74. avatarChris

    - Now that I understand the “hearts” came out of an off hours hack-a-thon and no other features delayed I’m not annoyed with it.

    - I also feel weird about giving my co-workers “hearts”. Especially since it was released on Valentine’s Day it seems way to romantic for a business tool. People might less annoyed if you could customize the graphic and text to something besides a heart.

    - It might partly be me. I don’t get Facebook/Twitter/etc. My co-workers don’t seem to use it much either, even the younger ones. I do my work, keep my boss happy, and joke around with whoever is around (in that order), but I don’t need to “heart” them on tasks. I could just talk with them.

    - Sounds like some people should chill. Just don’t use it.

  75. avatarOliver

    The heart is definitely too effeminate and like Chris said too romantic. I’d feel a bit strange giving a heart to a colleague or a contractor. A smiley face would have been better I think.

  76. avatarJill

    I have to add my vote to the heart being “creepy” in a work environment. I like the idea, but please change it to something more platonic like a star or high-five or… pretty much anything but a heart. I use asana to work with clients, not coworkers, and we definitely don’t have “heart” kind of relationships. I live in fear that I am going to click that darn heart by mistake!

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    1. avatarHamish

      Note to self (and others): There was a ‘Thumbs Up’ written inside angle brackets between ‘I’ and ‘NY’. Hopefully this provides the required context.

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