"Welcome to Not-Together Time."

(This was also posted in our blog here)

Synchronous comes from the Greek prefix syn, "together" and chron, meaning "time". The opposing term, asynchronous, and by extension asynchronous work, literally translates to "not-together time" or "without-together time". But async is more than just shorthand for "self-scheduling" or "without meetings". It's a task and communication management system that ensures group cohesion, quality output, and smooth progress in the absence of a single time zone and continuous supervision. It allows you to fine-tune work, so that pressure is even, tasks are completed swiftly and you stay nimble.

An even, swift, and nimble pipeline produces exactly the right quantity of output for its requirements, and all its stages are balanced in terms of efficiency and speed, resulting in no waste of time or resources. This is inspired in the Toyota Production System 3Ms methodology; more information about that here. Async work relies on three main tenets (click the arrows to expand each section):

https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/secure.notion-static.com/b6161c86-1795-4028-b9a4-1455df185281/swim_team.jpg

Buzzbee Barkley, 1935, definitely not async.


Summary

Async work is a way to organize how to get stuff done with less interruption and higher efficiency based on a few ideas: