A shared documentation and note taking tool that tip-toes the line of a flexible no-code platform (for teams of all sizes).
Our Unfiltered Thoughts
Notion is part of a category of apps often referred to as an "all-in-one", for which we aren't particularly fans of.
The main problem we have with this is it feels more like a cop-out when asked to define what you are—we do everything.
Notion started as a team knowledge base app, and that's what it should really be defined as. The problem is, as you're doing well in a single category, some apps decide to double-down, while others look to increase their TAM (Total Addressable Market). Notion is in the latter camp.
We've found that rolling out all-in-one solutions with customers is actually more difficult to get team adoption due to overwhelm.
Take Notion, it's not opinionated. In them deciding to make it super flexible, allowing it to "do anything", it by design becomes overwhelming with time. We know, it'll be incredibly exciting at first—all of the limitless potential! But then that "potential" turns to overwhelm in weeks and months.
What structure should I add these notes in? Should I add tasks here? Or over here? Do I message you on Slack, or @comment you here in Notion? Because it does "everything", it introduces micro-fatigue for doing anything.
When To Consider
Although, if you're looking for an incredibly flexible note taking tool that struts the lines of "no-code builder", where you actually see structure as a negative, then that's where an all-in-one app like Notion will actually shine.
When teams start having micro-success with Notion, they end up trying to use it for everything, and this is exactly where Notion's limitations and flaws are shown.
We're taking customer notes in Notion, what if we actually had our customer's information in Notion as well! Thus the mistake of trying to use Notion as a CRM is born. It will never be a proper CRM. Yes, Notion has relational databases at the core, and a CRM is really just a bunch of relational databases at the end of the day, but the difference here is opinionation and structure.
Versus getting into this point further here, that's where we've written a post explaining why Notion is not a CRM.
Your team is using Notion collaboratively with some of your clients now, eh? That's great! We have a collaborative shared knowledge base, what would make this even better? A project management tool—let's build that right into Notion as well, because tasks are really just line items in a database, right?
The same issue arises as before. What makes a good project management tool like Motion actually good, is the opinionation and structure. You can't just start connecting tasks to customers to notes to videos to XYZ. That's a surefire way to overwhelm absolutely everyone on your team.
The goal of a project manager is to actually get work done—with Notion as a project manager, you'll be spending more time building out a project manager, tip-toeing the line of product manager (instead of project manager).
Choosing to roll out something like Notion across your team requires immense thought, structure, documentation, and training.
So are you trying to build all of this out yourself? And if so, are you a product designer? Do you understand your team's specific needs even better than they do? Or are you just trying to build what you think is needed and then plan to have everyone use it in that way?
If the latter, adoption is more than likely to fail, and you might want to reconsider choosing an all-in-one tool like Notion, and instead opt for something more purpose-built as your team's internal knowledge base like an alternative like Slite.
There is currently no promo code for this app but we are close partners, so if you use the link above to visit the site and then let their team know that Efficient App sent you, you may just get a little something... extra 😉
There is currently no promo code for this app—we'll update it here if that changes in the future!
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