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Welcome to P2 Feedback

Do you have questions, feedback, suggestions or ideas for P2? This is a direct communication channel with the team developing it at Automattic.

Feel free to ask questions in your native language. Automattic has team-mates in 77 countries.

P2 Patterns: Merge Fields?

What would be really useful for me would be to have some kind of “mail merge fields” style codes that can be added to P2 Patterns. E.g. I could enter a code for the date in a variety of formats, or the date-last-Xday, or a link to the Author’s page, or something. These would be automatically populated with the relevant information when a post was created based on that pattern:

Half-hearted mockup.

Not a big deal, and P2 Patterns are already pretty awesome, but could be a nice-to-have.

10 Ways to Avoid Unnecessary Meetings with Asynchronous P2s

Our CEO recently asked us to reflect on this question for the new year: “Are all your meetings so effective that you look forward to them?” It’s important to also ask, if you are a meeting organizer, are attendees looking forward to your meeting? Live meetings have their place but are costly in terms of time and energy.

Asynchronous work has a lot of buzz but many don't know what it looks like or how to adapt to it. Some readers of this P2 are part of organizations that are looking to move to async work and to use P2 as Automattic makes use of it. Here are 10 P2 use cases that you might find useful.

1. Courses P2

Automattic and others are using P2 to train staff and teach courses using asynchronous courses and boot camps. Students don’t need to all be on the same Zoom call to learn and interact.

2. Requests P2s

Our legal staff tells us that in the past when someone needed a contract, the default was to schedule a meeting to discuss. The default now is to submit legal requests on the contracts P2. Our legal team has a standardized form to complete. The contracts can then be discussed in comments.

Additionally, Automattic’s Systems/IT team, Data Teams, and others have request P2s:

3. Status Reports P2

Automattic has a P2 called Thursday Updates where every team is required to provide a status update summary every two weeks. At many organizations, such updates would be delivered in Powerpoint at a live meeting, often to full rooms with people who don’t need to be there.

4. New Employee Introductions

With office cultures, when a new employee joins someone might walk them around the office to introduce them. Automattic asks every new employee to write a post and embed a video where they introduce themselves and co-workers respond and welcome in comments.

Another format is for a manager to interview a new team-mate:

5. New Hire Trials

Hiring new staff is often done in a series of Zoom calls or in-person meetings that can be exhausting for everyone. At Automattic, we create a P2 for each new candidate and work with them on trial projects.

6. Call Notes

It’s common to have a follow-up meeting where the first 10 minutes is where people try to remember what was said in a prior meeting. At Automattic, it’s a requirement that every external call have notes shared in P2. That way if you missed the call you can get a summary, or if you were on the call you can be reminded. You can also consider videoing the call and embedding the Loom or other video type in the P2 so that people can ask questions and comment.

You can also embed the video recording from a meeting into a P2 so that people can watch later and comment:

7. Collaborate with Partners and Customers On P2

Partners and clients will often want to schedule a regular meeting, even if there are no major updates to discuss. Consider creating a partnership or major client P2 and asking the partner or client to share updates there. Then only schedule meetings as needed.

8. Celebrate Wins

Office cultures might schedule after-work outings to celebrate wins or commemorate a year of success. As we can’t easily get people together in person it’s common at Automattic to use P2 to celebrate wins.

9. Meetup Guides and Summaries

Teams at Automattic periodically meet up in person. Team leads are tasked with researching and booking. They also must summarize meetups to share details like attendees, location, cost, projects, Internet speed tests, and other logistics. Without these posts, meetings might be required with accounting to discuss costs and with other team leads who are researching the location. Fun fact: historically Lisbon, Portugal and Hawaii have been the most popular meetup locations at Automattic.

10. Document a Challenging Topic

Automattic has a number of documentation P2s that we call Universities. We have everything from Domain University to Scheduling University. There is so much to cover in these university P2s that it might require a full-day live training session. With these P2 universities, staff can drink from these firehose on their own when they have time.

New P2 formats

@jonburke, I’ve not created a new P2 for a few months. Clearly good things happening with product evolution but my use case is focused on collaboration (as we’ve discussed) and I require both simple set up and ease of use for my clients who are usually not bloggers.

The value prop for me has been and is:

  • Prioritizing team communications and collaborations on projects
  • Planning, organizing, and sharing project status
  • Documenting opportunities and decisions
  • Asynchronous communications with geographically distributed teams
  • Leverage as a knowledgebase on an engagement via Search

I tried creating a P2 for a new client today. First one I’d done since October, 2021. Skipping Theme selection didn’t go well so I went back and selected the best option I could find – one from Automattic that promoted simplicity in design and set up and was neither.

If getting the basics requires a paid plan, I have no issue with that but want to be certain the P2 trajectory doesn’t lose its original use as a communications/collaboration tool for projects. For my needs I would prefer the more traditional theme like the screenshots still presented on and throughout the P2–The New Working website, like this:

From P2 website

And this….,

My clients, as you know are generally not bloggers but I’ve developed a good toolset that combines P2, Slack channel (if in doubt P2 it!) Google Workspace which has virtually eliminated email communications. Thought I found my comfort zone but change is inevitable, I guess.

Welcome any/all feedback from the community. Thx M

P2’s Year in Review and Look Ahead

2021 has been the apex of P2’s evolution since the product was launched in 2009 and relaunched in 2020. One reason for P2’s rapid evolution has been that so many people at Automattic contributed to improving everything behind the scenes from the apps to performance to new blocks.

Organizations that have standardized on P2 recognize that the vision for the platform is to offer freedom from the drudgery of email, waves of Zoom calls, and attention-diverting live chats. P2 offers asynchronous communications powered by the highly regarded WordPress editor. In 2022, P2 users will see new windows open with more expansive features including a people directory and P2 Patterns.

Here are some highlights from 2021:

A Peak at What’s Next For P2 in 2022

Collaborative editing means you will be able to work on P2 draft with teammates before posting.

More Integrations. A top P2 benefit is that your team can share content from apps that not all can access. In 2022, we will continue to add more integrations. If you use Slack and P2, you will be able to easily pick Slack messages that you decide are important and should be shared in P2.

Conversely, you will also be able to receive new post notifications for P2 sites in your workspace. A channel can be subscribed to multiple P2s. ⬇️

Github embeds and more integrations. If you use Github, you will be able to embed Github issues.

People Directory will allow you to manage the members in your workspace, invite more and keep profiles for each to learn more about them and see their activity. ⬇️

P2 Patterns. You may have heard of the WordPress Block Patterns. P2 is bringing on a new way for you to copy and reuse formatting.

New Hosting Options. P2 has its first customers hosted on WordPress VIP and will continue to expand on that momentum.

Let us know what P2 features you want to see in 2022. We can only hope that you are as excited about P2 in 2022 as we are. Keep going with your P2 and as always stay in touch!

A Little Confused with new P2 Home page

Having used P2 fairly successfully with my photography group, I am recommending it to my village’s new Biodiversity Group. I therefore created a new P2 with a new WordPress account. I now have two P2s as another was created at the sometime with general after the name I specified.

If I understand correctly, one of the P2s is the Hub so no one can make posts – it will just display all my P2s for that workspace and as I haven’t upgraded, it will display just the other new one with general it its name. Is it this general one that I should be inviting other members of the Biodiversity Group to join?

When I created the P2, I made it private. Now I want to share it with the chairman of the group, I have changed the settings on the general P2 to public but the workspace P2 remains as Private and there are no options on the Settings menu to make it public – does this matter?

Since I first started this post, I now understand it. If I invite members to the Hub/Home P2, they will be members of all the sub groups. If I invite them to the general group, they will be guests and have access to that P2 only.

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