When Scott and I started Atlassian 15 years ago, we knew that we wanted to build an enduring, values-driven company. And though we’ve learned a lot and accomplished a lot since those early days, I truly believe we’re just getting started. We’re making bold bets to shape the future of teamwork through our Platform, our Products, our Practices, and our Brand. I’ll share more about these bets further below. But first, I’d like to focus on one of our fundamental beliefs about successful teamwork.
Our mission is to unleash the potential in every team. And when it comes to teamwork, there’s a belief that we’ve held all along. It’s a belief that’s as deep in our organizational bones as the code in our products: work should be more open. In fact, if you walk through any Atlassian office across the globe, you’ll see this sign: Open Company, No Bullshit.
Being an open company is central to our culture at Atlassian; it’s fundamental to how we work together and how we build our products. And we believe that all companies and all teams benefit from working in a more open, connected way.
Over the years, we’ve witnessed thousands of teams held back by inefficient practices, inadequate tools, and negative work cultures. Upon closer study, we observed that these teams were often siloed, emphasized productivity over people, or relied on top-down decision-making. We call this a “closed” way of working. These teams were capable of far more than they were actually delivering, and that’s where we wanted to help.
In contrast, we’ve encountered high-performing teams defined by positive energy, trust, and incredible agility. On these teams, information flows freely and team members have access to the resources they need to get work done. These teams work “open.”
Here are three dimensions of openness that define the world’s most impactful teams:
- Open ways of working – Teams that create natural invitations to connect, to start dialogues, to share ideas, making knowledge more accessible within and across teams.
- Open ways of thinking – Teams where alternative viewpoints are welcome, and teammates are encouraged to challenge assumptions. When we create safe environments and let creative conflict thrive, ideas can come from anywhere and we tap into the creative genius of the entire team.
- Open ways of being – Teams that empower everyone to bring their authentic selves to work. They create space for individuals to bring their true selves to work, and opportunities for everyone’s unique opinions and voices to be heard.
The Atlassian Teamwork Platform
Our vision is to create a common language for teamwork. Millions of people use our products every day to work with their teams, which gives us a unique perspective into how different teams across different industries accomplish their work. Despite their differences, we’ve identified a set of patterns and interactions that are common, whether a team is shipping software, planning events, or finding cures for diseases.
This week at Summit, we announced the Atlassian Teamwork Platform. This platform will underpin many of our products, and help teams collaborate more effectively with one another. Our teamwork platform is built around three major pillars:
- People – Connecting you with the right people on your team at the right time, in the right context
- Elements – Enabling teamwork through collaborative patterns, enabling teamwork in a consistent and fun way across our products
- Home – Bringing together people and elements into one unified space, where you can easily focus on the work that is most important to you
Our goal is to deliver a smart, consistent, and engaging experience for you and your team. Together, we’ll help you work more open and connected – across all of our products, every day.
Products: Trello, Stride and more
Earlier this year, we acquired Trello. It’s an amazing service used and loved by millions globally, from Boston to Bangkok. It’s the perfect addition to Atlassian’s family of products, and we just released a new native desktop app for Mac and Windows. This new app will provides a deeper set of features that make it easier than ever to organize projects for every team, from finance to marketing and everything in between. We’re also celebrating an exciting milestone – Trello just surpassed 25 million registered users!
We also introduced Stride: our new team communication tool built from the ground up to help teams work more effectively. Stride empowers teams to talk less and do more, by bringing all the ways you communicate (visual, voice/audio, written, non-verbal) into one place.
Finally, we are making big investments in the evolution of our user experience across our cloud products. Our new Simply Powerful design unifies our products like never before. Creating a more unified, shared experience across products makes teamwork more effortless, and enables teams to move faster and accomplish more.
Practices: The Atlassian Team Playbook
We believe that teams need more than software to do great work. Success in an unpredictable world requires constant improvements in culture, team processes, and the ways in which people on a team interact with one another. This is why we created the Atlassian Team Playbook, a resource that comes directly from the study of how our own teams work… and don’t work. It reflects our successes and failures of working together in teams. The playbook includes Health Monitors and “plays” that you can run to help your team become connected and make better decisions.
We assembled this resource for teamwork and opened it up for all to see, benefit from, and contribute to. In essence, we opened up our company playbook so that you might benefit from them… and, we might benefit from your engagement with them. In this way, we all win. The approach that we’ve taken has required a shift in how companies typically build their businesses. First and foremost – it’s recognition that in a world of widely distributed knowledge, companies cannot afford to rely entirely on their own research and resources. The key is to know what internal information to share outside, and what external information to bring inside. Simply put, it is having the mindset of open innovation and the discipline to experiment with new ideas.
Nothing inspires us more than advancing the state of teamwork around the world. Through open work, the right tools, and the right practices – we believe that every team can accomplish great things. That’s why we’re in this game, and its why we do the things we do. Thank you for joining us on the journey.
Throughout Summit, we’ve been introducing some of the ways we’re opening up work for teams. To read up on more details about our new products and updates, check out these blog posts: