Notion Design Principles

Hey Folks, I hope all of you are doing well. During the month of May, multiple sessions with contributors were held to understand the major pain points, suggestions and structural changes with Notion. While discussing the issues, a retrospective board was created. Based on the pain points and the preliminary analysis of the current Notion structure, certain principles have been identified as the cornerstone of the Notion revamp process.

Summary of Pain Points

  1. There is no clear distinction between the AN DAO’s Notion’s various use cases. It acts as a workspace for most guilds but it also acts like a Wiki page for the DAO to disseminate information within the community. Also, a clear audience has not been defined for the Notion (Whether it’s core contributors? new contributors? lurkers? OR everyone?)
  2. There is no coherence in pages and no standard procedures are linked together. There are no umbrella pages which unite basic elements such as DAO wide meetings, who’s who diary or general bounties.
  3. The Notion structure is painful to go through even for general contributors. Hence, the current notion design doesn’t support the new contributor journey as it is a barrier when it comes to their understanding of the AN DAO.
  4. Notion is not interactive in nature and the same is filled with blocks of written text. There are no audio-visual descriptions of the DAO functions.
  5. There is no standardisation of pages. For example, each squad’s/guild’s notion home page looks a lot different as compared to others. New contributors are deterred to visit all the guilds/squad pages as they have to spend a considerable amount of energy in order to understand the logistics/functioning of each guild/squad.

Design Principles

  1. Transparency: While the literal meaning of the term indicates that all information must be publicly available. However, accessibility of information and concise/easy to understand language are also important factors which enable transparency. A transparent information flow on Notion will help the whole Aragon ecosystem integrate with the AN DAO core contributors. Similarly, new and talented contributors can also be onboarded without friction.

  2. Scalability: The basic information infrastructure and guild/squad workspace on Notion should be robust and scalable. Certain commonalities and standards must be implemented so that if the number of guilds/squads doubles or core contribitors increase by 10X, the AN DAO should be able to function without any operational breakdown.

  3. Record of Progress: Notion should be efficiently used to document all the major tasks and deliverables with the AN DAO. It will prevent communication breakdowns and gaps. Due to the remote/WFH working nature of DAOs, it is important to record all the progress in a structured manner so that contributors can work asynchronously across all time zones.

  4. Accountability: All Notion pages and task/deliverable documentation must have owners or combined ownership must be reflected within a Guild/Squad for proper maintenance of information flow. In a decentralised organisation, dispersed ownership of the allocated tasks/work is important to ensure that the tasks are completed within an adequate time frame and contributors can be held accountable.

  5. Contributor Centric: Due to the organic growth of the AN DAO Notion, there is a lack of a structured information flow which is friendly toward new contributors. Hence, any Notion change shall reflect a contributor centric approach which can become a catalyst for frictionless onboarding of contributors. All the steps must be created keeping new contributors in mind.

While taking any major step or suggesting any changes, these principles will be kept in mind in order to ensure that the community’s needs are met. As AN DAO will slowly transition into a product a centric DAO, information flow will always be a key factor which will determine the success of Aragon.

Please feel free to suggest any additional principles which must be kept in mind while suggesting the final changes.

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Why don’t we use the old Aragon Community Notion page for the Wiki page part of things? So we would have the Aragon Project Notion be for contributors and for working spaces. Then the Aragon Community Notion for New contributors, lurkers, and the dissemination of information through the community.

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Don’t you think we should consolidate everything in one notion? Don’t you think that would be better for transparency?

Obviously, we have to arrange things better but in general, don’t you think that’s better?

PS: I don’t know how I missed this comment. Sorry :frowning:

No worries, I’ve been completely slammed and just saw this message lol

Makes total sense. In which case should we get rid of the other Notion all together? It is a team plan that someone is paying for. No clue who that is, to be honest.

Hi, these pain points are common and things I’ve seen before. While notion is not interactive in nature, it can serve as a really helpful tool when it comes to organization of information.
This discussion dates back to may 31st but if this process is still on going, I’d like to help the person in charge of it as I have ideas on how to structure the different guilds.

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There is no standardisation of pages. For example, each squad’s/guild’s notion home page looks a lot different as compared to others. New contributors are deterred to visit all the guilds/squad pages as they have to spend a considerable amount of energy in order to understand the logistics/functioning of each guild/squad.

Don’t you think standardization of pages doesn’t really matter, all squads notion home pages should not compulsorily look the same. As a matter of fact each guilds/squad, should have someone managing their own home page for them, the way they see it fitting with the guild/squad progresses and records. This way a new joiner would not be confused as there is someone on the team to give direction on where to find whatever record on that guild’s notion. So if there’s seperate guilds notion record keepers, Point 5 wouldn’t be a pain point.

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Thanks a lot @kndlexi for your comment. I agree that all pages shouldn’t look the same, and it is upon the guilds/working groups to make sure everything is mentioned in a logical flow. Hence, we are just going to recommend elements that should exist in each page. It is upon the guild to decide how the same should be structured.

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