Welcome to the Freeformers Knowledge Base on flux.am. It's a collection of original and curated content that will help you to make your Playbook and re/launch your team internally.

This video should give you a bit of inspiration as well as some suggestions for being effective if your teams, but we'd also like to give you some resources to make things happen. We'll split this into three areas:

- why?
- how? 
- but? 

Here's the Playbook Canvas that will support you to design your culture, purpose, and the playbook itself.

Let us explain more...


WHY ?

You'll probably hear a lot about purpose driven business and unfortunately, a lot of it is just hot air. Being purposeful essentially means 2 things I think:

  1. Motivation and focus: being purposeful means knowing why you're doing what you're doing, which is pretty obvious, but you'd be surprised... when a group of people are bound together with a real understanding of why they're doing what they're doing, what direction they want to have, they do great work. That's when you get that great buzz. A clear dream can replace the role of leadership sometimes. The vision is the leader.
  2. Good with a capital G: being purposeful means doing Good. It doesn't have to be to change the world, but at least leave it a tiny bit better off, we think this is incredibly galvanising, so consider this. What dent do you want to make? What's going to be better about this place since you joined?

So here are some questions for you to think about when you're illustrating, verbalising, and visualising your reason for doing what you're doing:

  • What motivates and unites you?
  • Why are you here? Why are you doing this?
  • What impact do you want to have?
  • What do you stand against?

You'll know you're onto something when:

  • You feel it
  • It get’s you really excited
  • Words don’t matter any more
  • It's good for you
  • It's good for the world

STORIES

There are some great case studies of meaningful organisations, here are a couple of our favourites:

  • Elon Musk, watch this video and particularly listen out for this quote 55secs in "minimise existential threats to humanity"
  • Patagonia are a beautiful company, read up on them, they believe in being kind to the environment so much that they suggest you don't buy too many of their clothes!

HOW?

There are a bunch of buzzwords to look out for in terms of how you work. Listen for: culture, organisational design, process, and structure. These are all important things and there are some incredibly inspiring stories. We'll try and debunk them here for you. 

When deciding on how you work, try to consider the following:

  • How do you think work should be?
  • What do you think will make you an awesome team?
  • What do you think your environment should be?
  • What do you want to be copied for?
  • Do it your own way
  • Agree on some rules you can all live by
  • How do you make decisions?
  • What ways of working will allow you to bring your best?

There's some great inspiration below. We'd suggest that you create space for freedom in your team, whilst also creating accountability around the things you each do and your different skills.

Also, make sure there is some agreement as to how you work: When do you meet? How do you make decisions? What processes do you use to make your team learn and everybody grow?

Using the right tools is essential for this. We recommend getting awesome at using G Suite, Trello, and Slack. Those 3 things (and their equivalents) power most modern businesses and startups. 

  • G Suite to document, collaborate, and communicate externally
  • Trello to track work processes and be transparent about workflow
  • Slack to communicate and stream conversations to be efficient

It's key that you all learn how to be a great team, which means being open and kind with each other to help each other grow. You will mess up, and you will annoy each other, and that's ok. Be kind and generous to each other. Give and request feedback. Reflect regularly.

Above all though, try to role model the kind of behaviour that you think a good, creative, inspiring, human workplace should have. That'll have a big impact on people around you.

Inspiration Links

  • Spotify (their developers are in self-managed teams)
  • Valve (this game company is also totally self-managed)
  • Netflix (they have a culture of taking freedom seriously)
  • Hanno (they're our friends and they're cool)
  • Buffer (every team member is allowed to know everything)

BUT...

Making allies is the best way to change a business, so be mindful of the difference between the way you work and the way the companies you go into work. Most companies work like it's still the 1980s, anything fresh and new that comes in is disruptive and nobody likes being disrupted, so be aware, empathic and kind about that.

Bear in mind that change can be uncomfortable. A lot of people will see you just as millenials, like you're aliens or something. It's ok for them to think that. It's also ok for you to not care. Just treat people as you'd like to be treated: as equals. Nobody is above you, and you aren't above anybody either. Don't let yourself be contaminated by archaic work cultures.

SOME READING

We wrote these two short blog posts a while back and recommend you have a quick read through them, they could help you find your feet:

And Jon wrote this post about how marketing needs to change, that will be most interesting for the 46ers: Why marketing needs to be fundamentally transformed from the inside out — an org design perspective

And here are some more links, definitely watch the first video link, one of our heroes: