Talking of US tech companies with huge valuations, this months essential tech is Slack, the fastest growing business app in history. Launched in 2013, the messaging and file sharing tool now has a $2 billion valuation. Amazingly, it only exists because, after ex Flickr founder Stewart Butterfield spent 4 years unsuccessfully building a gaming app, he decided to release the software they had developed to collaborate as a team, as a standalone product.
And it went ballistic, amassing hundreds of thousands of users at an exponential rate, initially from the tech community but branching out to the wider world now.
Why should you use it? Because it is a great way to communicate with teams, share files, updates, links and ideas. It is also very cleverly gamified (as you would expect from a game developer) and includes a raft of irreverent and enticing features that make using it both great fun and highly productive. It’s sort of what Yammer could have been, if it had not been swallowed up in the corporate bear hug of Microsoft.
The only issue that sometimes occurs when your whole team uses Slack is that the workplace becomes library quiet, as everyone finds it quicker and more efficient to just communicate using Slack.
The upside of course is that everyone gets an awful lot done.
This post was first published in the Estates Gazette 8th August 2015