Communications · Founding

Any recommended communication strategies and tools for early-stage founding teams?

Matthew Eshed Engineering and Operations Projects Leader

July 8th, 2016

Hello FounderDating community, I hope this discussion finds you in good spirits.

I'm looking for recommendations for tools and strategies, for managing communication among a small founding team. Are there any good alternatives to Slack? Perhaps you've used Trello in a non-conventional manner? Slack would allow efficient scaling, but it can get messy for those not constantly glued to our phones and computers. Simpler is better. 

Stories about successes and failures with founding team communication are highly encouraged. 

Looking forward to reading your responses!

Luis Avila Owner/Fullstack Architect at IdeaNerd LLC

July 8th, 2016

I have found that setting communication ground rules is more important than tools. You and your team will find the right tools that work for you.

When working with a new team I always set these ground rules.

1) Tell me what I don't want to hear.
2) No news is NOT good news. No news is bad news waiting to happen.
3) It's my responsibility to make sure you hear and understand what I want to communicate. Miscommunication is not your fault. It is my fault.



Sachin Agarwal Founder, Braid (braidhq.com) - lightweight project and client management built into Gmail and Google Apps

July 8th, 2016

We use Braid - https://braidhq.com - for this. It's built into Gmail so there isn't a separate app and there's no need to copy and paste. Plus it's super useful when adding someone to an existing project or idea thread. Of course, there's a Hair Club thing here.

Bill Lennan Red Rope Social

July 8th, 2016

We use 3 things.
SMS - cuz it's silly reliable
In app chat - cuz it's convenient ( and not as reliable as I want )
Google docs - great for process, marketing, specs to be shared/reviewed/commented. 

I also have Evernote - mostly for personal writing but my team has access to the business related docs ( we are transparent )

Michael Meinberg Teacher (iOS Development) at The Mobile Makers Academy (A Hack Reactor School)

July 8th, 2016

Actually we have used both the tools you mentioned, Trello and Slack extensively, and both are well written, easy to use, and good for small company communications.

Richard Reed

July 8th, 2016

If you have a distributed team, the challenge will be managing urgent communications which we revert to Skype chats or instant messaging. The problem is that those messages cannot be searched, which is the benefit of Slack. If you find trello too loose, they Adana that has a built in robust calendaring feature. I have seen teams in early stage give up on Adana nectar it is too cumbersome and go back to using Trello+Slack as it is so easy to use and you can setup Slack to receive updates when there is activity in Trello. Also, both services are free and work on most platforms.

Don Daglow 3-Time Inc. 500 CEO, Technical Emmy® Award, International Speaker, Advisor at Founders Space accelerator

July 8th, 2016

I like Favro, from Hansoft, which is new. Full disclosure: I'm friends with the founders and have done work with them. The basic software is free. You pay to add extra modules if you need them. Don

Chicke Fitzgerald

July 8th, 2016

I love Basecamp

Rajasekar Rajendran President at Acumen Technologies Group Inc.

July 10th, 2016

We religiously follow - No Email for internal communication. Only Slack & Trello & documentation in Google docs. 
For External Communication - Wordpress Blogs / Twitter / Facebook .
I think, Story Telling Courses (  https://novoed.com/storytelling-change-2016-2 ) will help better communication content development .

Miles Kane Entrepreneur | Leader | Wordsmith

July 10th, 2016

we might be able to help @ www.altocloud.com - we offer a variety of messaging tools (both internal / external) that you can use with a small team and scales easily to the enterprise. Happy to chat offline - Miles 

Tom B

July 11th, 2016

We are using Basecamp- great and inexpensive (one flat rate instead of per/user)