4 features to improve company culture in Notion

4 features to improve company culture in Notion

Mar 5, 2024

Creating a strong company culture doesn't just happen by chance; it needs thoughtful intention, careful planning, and commitment to build.

In today's world, with the rise of remote work, one key but often overlooked factor is the impactful use of systems to support this cause.

Systems that can encompass the company's mission, vision, practices, and core principles, influencing everything from the way your team works to employee interactions/satisfaction to decision-making processes that will, in turn, lead to overall organisation.

Notion is a simple yet powerful business management tool that promises to support company culture by providing users with a virtual office, allowing businesses to structure their workspace according to their unique needs in a way that aligns with their company values and processes.

Unfortunately, despite paying for premium accounts, many Notion users do not utilize the platform to its full potential.

Here are four ways to take full advantage of using Notion to create a lasting company culture:

1. Teamspaces

Arguably, one of the most helpful features in Notion for companies.

Teamspaces are effectively small workspaces within your workspace with their own set of permissions and security settings.

I like to think of Notion less as a project management space and more as a place to think, plan and organise.

When putting together or managing a team, having such a space can be crucial to productivity.

This feature allows you to create a space where each collective team member have their own specific location to not only have easy access to all the information that’s relevant to their work, and can customise the Notion sidebar to reflect

but also to collect pages that come together to form project roadmaps and documentation, making it easy for teammates to locate pertinent information about their jobs, projects, and the company in general.

With Notion, you can create a teamspace for every department in your company — marketing, sales, finance, engineering, and so on. This ensures that team members always have access to up-to-date information required to get their jobs done, fostering a culture of efficiency, delegation, and collaboration within the company.

[Watch the video here](https://youtu.be/dwRIudDva6Y)

2. Notion Q&A

Starting off with Notion’s latest and most exciting feature called Q&A. Q&A allows users to get instant answers to questions by querying information stored across their Notion workspaces.

This feature aims to reduce time spent searching for information, ranging from company wikis & docs to task retrievals and much more that a user has access to, allowing users to stay focused on their core work.

For example, new employees could get up to speed by asking Q&A to summarize critical SOP documents instead of digging through files themselves. This approach promotes a sense of collaboration and accessibility, breaking down barriers of onboarding newcomers and finding relevant information for also established team members instead of drowning in files.

This way, the whole team gets tighter.

[Watch the video here](https://youtu.be/PXTrCl6OYU0)

3. Database Automations

Adding on to our list is a feature that finally makes it possible to develop automated workflows directly from your Notion databases and operates on the “if-this-then-that” principle. This means actions are triggered based on specific events or changes in the workspace, such as additions to pages or changes to properties.

However, before getting too excited about this feature, a little caveat: Automations are only fully available in the paid plans. You can use them if they are part of a template, but you are not able to edit automation. You can only turn them off or on.

A lot of Notion power users have been waiting for these kinds of native automations since the inception of Notion buttons, but for the average Joe, when are automations really useful? Here are two practical examples using database automations:

a. Creating Default Tasks

Before now, it wasn't possible to set up default tasks in Notion, which made things a lot more manual. These ‘default tasks’ are like pre-set to-dos you often use for a specific use case.

Imagine onboarding a new client. Every time, you do similar tasks like educating them on your services/offerings, establishing preferred communication channels, developing customized training plans, providing access to necessary resources & materials, etc.

Instead of manually entering these tasks every time, it would be easier if they were automatically created in a database as soon as a corresponding client project was started. This automation is cool because it shows how one part of Notion can trigger actions in another part.

Start by clicking the lightning bolt icon.

Choose "Page added" as the trigger – meaning when you start a new project. As for the action, you can add pages once more to our task database. P.S - You’ll notice that you can choose the database that you’re in and any other database you have edit access to.

Now that we’ve selected where we want these tasks to populate let's go ahead and set up default values for the properties in the project database:

  • Adding a title

  • Adding an assignee for the task

  • Adding a dynamic relation to ‘this page’ so that every task that is created with this automation is related to the corresponding new project.

So, we’ve gotten a new default task to be created when a new project is also created, but since we’re creating multiple default tasks, you have to repeat this step to get as many more tasks every time you create a new project, and no Notion does not have any workaround for this yet :(

Once that’s completed, you can add a sorting criteria where ‘created date’ or ‘due date’ is ascending, which puts your tasks in the correct order, and there you have it.

b. Setting Automatic Start and End Dates for Tasks

For our second use case, we’re looking to essentially time track our tasks by filling up the started date property whenever we change the status to ‘in-progress’ indicating that we are starting the task and filling up the completed date property whenever the status of the task is moved to ‘Done’.

To set this up, we’re gonna have to create 2 different automations and once again we head on to that lightning icon. Hit new automation and label it start time since there's 2 of them, and this time for our trigger, we’re going to set the status to filter it to just ‘in-progress’ and then set my completed date property to a dynamic Now value. Do the same for the second automation called completed time but this time set the trigger to when status is changed to ‘Done’.

Additionally, we can add a time tracking duration using formulas to calculate the number of days between the completed time stamp and the due time stamp.

This is useful because estimating and tracking time helps set realistic expectations, reducing stress and promoting a healthier work environment. When you know how long a certain task or project usually takes, it fosters accountability, encourages teamwork, and enhances communication, leading to an improved overall company culture within an organisation.

4. Notion Home

Saving the best for last, at the time of writing this article, Notion has just released a brand new feature called home that allows you to do a range of different things but mostly centralising your workspace into one location where you can access pages and databases. Think of it as a one-stop-shop for all your activities in Notion, and here’s what it looks like:

If you are using Notion with several team members in your company, you will see a ‘suggested for you’ section which automatically suggests certain documents or pages that you’re most likely to want to look at based on your behaviour/personal preference and ‘Trending’ section which shows you what is currently most viewed in a certain teamspace, so you get an idea of what the marketing team is currently working on. By far, the best feature of Notion home is the My task database which lets you:

  • See all tasks assigned to you across any database in your workspace - Insane!

  • Open tasks right from home as a page to see more context/add comments.

  • Customise the layout view of My tasks database while in full page view and seamlessly update properties within the My task widget without having to search for the original database.

  • Check on tasks for your team and add new tasks with filtering conditions that allow you to see tasks only assigned to you or tasks due for next week.

Having a homepage in Notion that provides a quick and personalized entry point for team members can enhance company culture by streamlining access to relevant information. This efficiency promotes productivity and reduces the time spent searching for resources, fostering a more focused and positive work environment.

In conclusion

thank you for reading our content. When you're ready, here's how we can help you:

  • Check out all of our plug-and-play Notion templates where you can get this Business CRM with a task management system included.