Category: Action Method

An Important Action Method Update

We’ve made the difficult decision to sunset ActionMethod Online permanently in the spring of 2014.

Our core products, Behance and 99U are growing exponentially, and we are challenging ourselves to focus our energy on our central mission: to empower and connect the creative world. At the same time, more and more task management solutions are coming to market run by teams that are solely focused on building applications for productivity. Deciding to close AMO has been a difficult decision for us, and we know it is an inconvenience for you.

We hope that delaying the official sunset until June 1st, 2014 leaves you plenty of time to wrap up existing projects on AMO and plan a smooth transition to another service.

As you may have already noticed, you are no longer being charged a recurring fee for AMO. Given your loyalty, we wanted you to be able to continue to use the product, free of charge, until we formally close it.

You’ll be able to continue using Action Method until June 1st, 2014; after that, the service will be taken offline. We encourage you to use this time to export your Action Steps and migrate to a new system.

We’ve outlined below two other task management systems that we recommend, all of which support the methodology.

Wunderlist
Wunderlist is more geared towards individuals and small teams, with the necessary features to practice the Action Method. Be sure to go into “Account Settings” and make the “All” view visible in the Sidebar to have a view of all of your tasks, sorted by due date.

Asana
Use Asana to create and manage tasks, and you can add tags, due dates, and other ways to easily organize your tasks. Asana is scalable for larger companies and supports delegation of tasks to other members of your team.

We will also continue posting more suggestions on our website.

Thank you, and please feel free to reach out to us with any questions.

-The Behance team

An Update on AMO

We wanted to update you on the status of Action Method, our ongoing exploration of task-management for Creatives. From the very beginning, our team has developed tools that help us work with a bias-towards-action. What started as a set of paper products became a business in itself, a methodology that we’ve shared in books and online, and in 2009, an online task-management service.

We’ve been happy to share this design, tool, and philosophy with others, using your feedback to guide a redesign last year, and sharing what we’ve learned on 99u.com.

Our ActionMethod.com service continues to be something we use ourselves, but we’ve decided to stop accepting new signups and planning future upgrades. Our core product, Behance, is growing exponentially, and we are challenging ourselves to focus our energy on our central mission: to empower and connect the creative world.

We will continue to maintain the service. All our current members will still have access to ActionMethod.com and will be able manage their Action Steps across devices, but we won’t be accepting new members. We remain committed to helping current members with questions or account issues, so feel free to get in touch with our support team if you have questions about your Premium account.

Still love the methodology? You don’t need AMO to use the Action Method. We have a full selection of products designed for the Action Methodology at CreativesOutfitter.com, including free downloadable sheets  of our paper products. These products were designed to help you capture Action Steps, Backburners, Focus Items, and Notes in your meetings or planning sessions. We also encourage you to visit 99u.com for plenty of tips on using the Action Methodology, and for new articles every day on productivity insights and career development to help you Make Ideas Happen.

-The Behance team

Behold, An All-New ActionMethod!

As you may have noticed, last night our team launched the Beta version of the new ActionMethod. With this major upgrade, our beloved task management application is faster and more powerful than ever before. We re-designed and re-built the application from the ground up, based on all of your feedback and our vision for the future of task management.

The new version includes some entirely new and long-requested features:

  • Shared Projects: Users will be able to easily share any project with another user, and gain visibility of all Action Steps – as well as access all discussions and file uploads associated with the shared project.
  • Focus Area: Important Action Steps from any project can be added to the “Focus” area, from across all devices that you use to manage Action Steps (iPhone, iPad, Android).
  • More Flexible Drag-n-Drop: You will be able to drag Action Steps around within and between dates – and projects – with great flexibility.
  • Alternative View For Action Steps: Users will have the option of viewing and managing their Action Steps as a simple horizontal checklist, in addition to the standard box format.
  • Speed Speed Speed: ActionMethod is now faster and more agile than ever before.

Of course, there are many other enhancements to ActionMethod that will help make it the most powerful and well-designed cloud-based task management application available! Our team is extremely excited about this release.

With the new version, we carefully considered feedback and the evolving market of online applications. It became very clear that ActionMethod is most helpful as a cloud-based task management application for creative people and teams that work with a bias-towards-action. Perhaps the biggest change is “Shared Projects.” We believe that the ability to share any project with other users will provide more transparency for Action Steps, and will simplify the sharing of notes, files, and discussions.

However, to make this change, we needed to completely restructure the architecture of the previous version.

  • References & Backburners: The new “References” section in projects is entirely new. Your past “references” will be downloadable (via a spreadsheet in Resources). While less than 3% of users leveraged this functionality in previous versions, we recognize that this will be an inconvenience for some users. We made this decision for two reasons: (1) references made within specific projects needed to be handled differently in order to fully sync between the iPad and online version, and (2) the new “shared project” feature allows users to share a new type of project notes without having to accept them. As such, we were forced to redesign and structure the notes in a way that makes previous notes and formatting not compatible with the new system. We have also combined Backburners and References, given user feedback. Most users were simply creating Action Steps without due dates for “backburner items” that they hope to get to at some point, but no time soon. We thought this was much better than the previous approach. Do not worry, for the few of you that have them, your old references/backburner data are still accessible until January 1, 2013 as an organized spreadsheet, available for download. We are confident that the new system will be more conducive for managing and sharing project-specific notations with other users, across all devices. And, for those users that require robust formatting and editing functionality for note-taking, we suggest other applications like Google Docs and Evernote that specialize in such services.
  • File Management: In order to support the sharing of files in ActionMethod, we’ve redesigned and restructured the way files are managed. Going forward, files in “shared projects” will be accessible by all those that have access to that particular project (using the new “Share Project” feature). In the new ActionMethod, there will no longer be a need accept a file into a project, etc…  Less than 3% of users leveraged the file management functionality in previous versions. We hope that this new, more streamlined approach to managing files will make file management in ActionMethod much more useful for teams. Unfortunately, to facilitate this update in structure, the past organization of files in projects will not be supported. Your old files will be available for download until January 1, 2013 in Resources- and can always be uploaded again, if need be, to projects in the new system.

As a result of these changes the old references, and files you added in the previous version are not organized project-by-project in the new version of ActionMethod. To access this data so you can re-incorporate it into the new system, just go to Resources → Data Download.

As we have explained in past blog posts about the new version of ActionMethod, our team focused on the task management aspects of the application and worked to simplify and reduce the emphasis on notes and file management.

The new version of ActionMethod is vastly more productive and works well when used in conjunction with other external tools that specialize in note-taking across devices (like Evernote and Google Docs) and robust file storage services (like DropBox). More than ever before, ActionMethod will specialize in managing ACTION and revolutionizing task management between people and across devices. Action Method is still free to try, but we’ve also reduced the price of a monthly Premium account by 25% to make it available to more teams.

This version of ActionMethod is currently in Beta, so if you notice any problems or bugs, please let us know by clicking “Report a Bug.” Our team is here to answer your questions and do everything we can do to help with this transition.

We are very excited for the next era of ActionMethod and deeply appreciate your feedback and suggestions that have made this new version possible. We can’t wait for you to experience it yourself!

Bryan, Mell, Scott & Behance Team

PS: Haven’t heard of ActionMethod? Check it out.

ActionMethod 2.0 Nears Testing – Progress Update

Our team is making a lot of progress on the next version of ActionMethod. It’s been a long time coming, but we plan to kick-off real testing by the end of May and hope for a full release by the end of June (to be confirmed, based on testing outcome!). The product is coming along nicely, but we have had to rework a number of areas to ensure speed, security, and improved usability. Enclosed are a few action shots, just captured over Alex’s shoulder. Our team is super excited for the new version, and we will keep you posted as testing commences and the release date is confirmed.

For those of you that don’t know about ActionMethod, this is the tool we use internally to manage tasks. What started as a paper product to keep our team organized in the early days of Behance became an online and mobile ecosystem to manage tasks. The methodology incorporates clean design and a bias-towards-action to promote a sense of accountability for creative minds. ActionMethod has become an important side business for us, and we’re anxious to get the new version up and running!


Creative Tools for Creative People: Action Books

Did you know that Behance actually began with paper products? Back in 2006, when our small team was imagining ways to help organize the creative world, we knew that we needed to start with ourselves. So, before launching the Behance Network, Action Method or The 99%, we created a series of action-focused paper products – and, now we can’t imagine life without them! Here are a few snapshots from our design team’s idea-filled Action Books:


‘What is your next big idea?’ Matias Corea, Behance’s Chief of Design, brainstorms cards for Action Method cards in his Action Book.

Clement, Behance’s Senior Designer, sketches interface designs in his Action Book before they make it to the screen.

 

Looking Ahead: The Next Version of Action Method Online

Behance team members Scott Belsky and Bryan Latten share some insights about the next version of ActionMethod Online, currently under development.

A major update for ActionMethod Online is long overdue. We have just completed the concepting process and are already underway in developing the next generation of ActionMethod Online. We wanted to share some background for the project as well as guidance for some of the changes and improvements you will see.

Background
Our team created ActionMethod to help us live and work with a bias towards action. As a company with a mission to organize and empower creative professionals, we wanted to help people DO stuff. Before “the cloud” was a common term, we envisioned multiple devices and online apps keeping our tasks in sync at all times. What started as a simple paper product line and an online application for task management has become an entire task management ecosystem with a value for design and simplicity.

Over the past year we have brought ActionMethod Online to the Android, iPhone, and iPad platforms. The mobile versions of task management have been extremely well received. We have also introduced new features on the mobile versions, including: (1) “Focus” – a subset of tasks that you wish to focus on, (2) “Advisor” – data on your productivity within ActionMethod, (3) “Project Notes” –  a way to capture small notations within a particular project.

Read more →

Book Reviews of Making Ideas Happen RECAP

Making Ideas Happen
It has been about one week since the publication of Making Ideas Happen by Behance founder/ceo Scott Belsky. The book became an immediate bestseller upon launch, debuting at #15 on Amazon and leading every business and creative category. The book was also included in the Wall Street Journal as a national bestseller in business. Design and business blogs around the web have since had a chance to read the book and weigh in with reviews. Read more →