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Futurasana: brainstorming 2016

Reigan Combs and Jackie Bavaro

Imagine this: the year is 2016. It’s the beginning of the day and you’ve just arrived at work. You sit down at your desk (assuming that having a desk is still a “thing”) and open Asana. What do you see?

We spent the past week thinking about this question as part of our first-ever, company-wide brainstorm, “Futurasana”. Considering that our company is only 3 years old, fast-forwarding two years was a big leap.

Our goal was simple—to develop big, bold ideas for the future of teamwork, our product, and our company. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day work of improving what already exists but sometimes it’s hard to find time to think about what should exist. There were no parameters or constraints, no idea was too big (or too small), and our only limitations were our imaginations. Plus, we all had a chance to get out of our comfort zones; operations teammates could dream up big product ideas and engineers had an opportunity to weigh in on revenue growth and marketing.

We even asked you to imagine Asana in 2016 with us on Facebook and Twitter, and many of those ideas were presented to the entire company (thanks to everyone who participated!). Your requests for Asana drones and free ponies might not make it onto our task lists, but as for new mobile apps—we hear you and are working to deliver them much sooner than 2016.

Our trip to the future was a success—we imagined stunning new interfaces, invented novel ideas for how you can interact with your team, and even thought of new ways that Asana can interact with you. After brainstorming, we had a 2-day hackathon called “Hack to the Future” to bring some of our ideas to life (and it also gave us an excuse to make t-shirts). In addition to giving us a glimpse into our product’s future, Hack to the Future resulted in a new integration you’ll see next week, our “Snaptask” April Fool’s feature, some upcoming additions to the hacks tab, our “30 days without email challenge” video and competition, and a new project template that will debut soon.

We highly recommend doing a brainstorm like Futurasana with your team, even if you take an hour to brainstorm or just share an Asana project for future ideas. Now that our heads are back in 2014, we’re more excited about the future than ever before. Believe us, there’s a lot to look forward to!

  1. avatarMike Masin

    When you’re thinking about 2017, how about inviting Asana users to a brainstorming project so we can heart ideas :)

    1. avatarKarkuvel

      Theres a third party windows app and i feel it does a neat job, Sometimes even bettert than the native android app

  2. avatarKarkuvel

    How I wish, just as Asana is looking to minimise mail communication, would like support to be done vide an asana project where a workspace can be dedicated to support and all the users needing support give their comments and feedback feature requests. TRELLO follows this kind of model. This way things can be more transparent and also ensure utilisation of asana real time support it can be an example for users. Pls give a thought to this idea

  3. avatarMaximilian Held

    I’m the biggest fan of e-mail-free-collaboration; but to be fair, Asana also has an ulterior motive here.
    E-Mail is an open standard. Asana, inspite of all the API-magic of the world, is not, meaning a future in which collaboration is free of email, but full of Asana, also means great revenues for Asana Inc. and (potential) lock-in for users.

    So here’s a radical idea for Futurasana 2016: Why not open source (much of) Asana, so as to *really* make it future-proof and open. Nothing wrong with making a dime, of course — maybe Asana could go the way of Github.com and make money on the (proprietary) social graph and the convenience of hosting, all the while keeping user data and software open?

    Open-sourcing can also, of course, jumpstart developer creativity and help make any one software the de-facto standard (again, think git).

    I want to love Asana. Just like in, say, 2002, I loved Outlook. Didn’t work out for the both of us, and we had an ugly divorce, with lots of data lost. I don’t want to be in that situation again.

    (also at: http://www.maxheld.de/blog/2014/04/08/open-asana/)

  4. avatarQumar Sheikh

    The future of Asana, whatever it is should be equally mobile as it is desktop if not more mobile. I find myself working more from my phone than even, and that’s only increasing. The limits in asana mobile, limit the entire asana experience for me. I’m still a huge fan anyway. As my teams grow, I hope to become a paying member.

  5. avatarizzi

    Been using asana for a few days now and am really excited to use as a workspace–I definitely plan to do an idea/ brainstorm with my team, as that seems to be how we work best. I’m not sure where to leave suggestions but this seemed like an appropriate place to post:
    1) I agree with previous comment that I am gingerly approaching asana because it isn’t open source and i do feel “locked-in” so to speak–particularly as tasks are accumulating history and documents are being uploaded/ saved.
    2) I love the comments but it’s a STRUGGLE to have a live conversation–it would be great to have a chat app where you can have a chat meeting with someone but simultaneously access all the task buttons so that the members in the chat can add tasks as they think about them
    3) Update the calendar so that you can put times on your due-dates.
    But, so far so good! I’m much happier working and communicating on asana.

  6. avatarG

    Would there possible be a way to work on asana offline that would the synchronize when becoming online? Same kind of functionality as dropbox sync? I find it very annoying when I can’t connect to asana on the go.

  7. avatarPromythius

    Hi Asana,

    I really like your company ethos and style, and my team and I (a small start up organization based in Bangladesh — trying to create an alternative educational model based on advancments in learning theory+neuroscience+educational psychology etc….inspired by sherlock holmes ;) have started using your platform.

    One thing we’ve been looking for is possibly being able to have a ‘forum’ type thing where members can post a topic to brain storm ideas, or bring up issues?

    We can use alternative outside platforms, but it would be really good to have it integrated within asana.

    Anyways, keep up the good work. Love the fact that Im not having to email everything. Please let me know if there is scope for us to become investors (buyings shares. etc?)

    All the best,

    P

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