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Hello everyone and welcome back to the Keep productive YouTube channel, it is francesco here
And today we're very lucky to be joined by Daniel Eckler now me and Daniel were just talking
I just get to know him
Camille from the notion team and he recommended that I definitely get in touch with them after asking her
some of the tools that I wanted to sort of get involved in the new Tube channel more tours more interesting setups and motion and
Daniels blows everyone away. So I'm excited to dive into this notion
Daniel please do introduce yourself and a bit about your work
Founded in sold a few consumer technology companies have spent my career kind of at the intersection of
Technology and art and design and culture
So the first company I founded was a blog network for men's fashion and lifestyle
cruda, five million readers a year
Pictures of jackets and shoes and all sorts of stuff like that
We quickly learned that we had positioned it as a magazine, but no one wanted to read what we were writing
they just wanted to see the pictures and
We took that insight and said why don't we form a community that enables anyone to curate images and form community around that?
So essentially Pinterest before Pinterest just called pixie
Sold the previous company built up pixie to 35 million visitors a year did the whole DC circuit?
Eventually Pinterest did launch got enormous
Number two, so kind of automated pixie slow that off
Spent some time in the marketing industry and anomaly and BuzzFeed
Really just realizing that what I'm about to do most is
Just come up with ideas
Having run companies and focused on one idea for 10 years as
Opposed to in the marketing world you get to do five ideas a day
Was really really exciting transition for me and it's kind of informing the work that I'm doing today
So yeah kind of in a transition period right now thinking about what to do next and probably
Taking all the lessons
I've learned from the technology world and Mark world - how other people come up with cool
viral ideas to promote their businesses
fantastic and and Camille particularly
what like mentioned your creative brainstorming process and and I think that will obviously from all of the learnings from
those previous businesses be able to reflect in the notion a
question about notion
How did you?
Discover notion and why did you go about choosing it? Because I think sometimes there's a lot of modular apps out there
But which why did you decide to go with this one?
Designer developer named Corey Gibbons referred it to me
We share a lot of the same brain and interests and took his reference with a lot of weight
That said I still didn't try it for six months
Which I very much regret I'd encourage anyone today
If you're watching this and have not yet used notion to at least dive in and play around. Let's see if it's for you
It's the best - all I've ever used in my life. I'm obsessed with it
the primary reason that I use it is
Most of my work is kind of research and thinking and writing and organizing
And I've not found a tool that's even close to notion to allow me to do all those things
It's fast and minimal and simple and - as you mentioned modular allows me to kind of organize things and exactly the way I want
Yeah, it's just that I can't even imagine what life without it now
yeah, I'm the same like
You can't go back. Can you?
It's even harder
Well, I will pass over to you Daniel because you're gonna give us a little bit of a tour of your account
So let's jump in if you're if you're up for it
Lovely hopefully I've done there the right sharing settings. Oh, there we go. Well, it's great
So I spend I'm gonna put you up here I
Spend most of my day in these two windows
So the right window is kind of like my to-do-list, you know, that's the meetings. It's meeting with you
Meetings later today some things I want to do
As well as just like a scratch pad so, you know put some stuff that I want to take you through today
But throughout the day I'll just be typing random stuff in here
And always just using it. It's just a place to organize my thoughts and
Then on the other side, this is kind of a broader to-do list bigger projects
So actually you know what before we go there let's let's jump to maybe a pin another pin tab
So every morning I do
like a little morning routine thing and you'll notice here like this this this and this are all
different notion types that I use for different tasks
So half of my pin times are notion and to ask earlier, like why do you like it?
It's primarily for that reason if I could have all of my workflow be a notion. I'd be a very happy person
But yeah, so just every morning I kind of reflect and revisit kind of why I'm doing what I'm doing as I mentioned earlier like
Creating ideas and connected experience is really important to me helping other people do the same
And really pursuing like a person share with me this idea of idea foria
Just chasing ideas new ideas as opposed to you know, stuff like money and fame
I thought there's stuff in here, too
You know
Like I have my meditation and yoga just different stuff that I do throughout the day just keeps me grounded in the morning. I
Know hurry Asti on that vision area said you go about designing that in a separate application and then upload it as an image
Right. That's right. Yeah, if I could do it an ocean if there were some, you know simple image editing tools
That would be awesome and maybe one day there will be
Yeah, I guess just to see the workspaces so doing things you've seen that that's over here in
Progress I'll dig into a bit later. This is kind of like a flow for work that I'm doing right now. So
Maybe starting with strategy also use notion kind of as a wiki to just keep track of ideas and share those with other people
So the the company I'm working on right now is called space cadet
And the vision is to create other connected companies
and so
The problem that we're trying to solve is like innovations increasing and companies are having a hard time trying to keep up
And we believe that you know human progress is informed by
Experimentation and velocity the more experiments you do the faster. You do them the more likely you'll get a win
and you know
I won't go treated into this but just using this as a kind of an informative
reminder in the same way that the vision board reminds me personally what to focus on this helps remind
Me but also other people within the company
what we're doing in my
Testing and then that kind of leads into actual tasks coming out of that
So every quarter at the top here, I'll put like the three
Tasks so
You know continuing solve for exploration whether that's meditation or reading working on launching space-cadet and helping inspire ideas
and this just helps as an anchor to
Create new tasks and ensure they're lathering up to a broader vision and broader bigger goals
Every two weeks. I'll do like a little sprint to ensure that you know, I'm focused on the right stuff
Said I just look loads into like a process
Whereby, you know
I run through some things that have been happening in the past while and if they've been working and what I should focus on next
Those will turn into tasks that are here or I'll pull them from previous tasks
So you can see like there's a bunch of tasks here for example
lathering up to inspiring ideas
I'll do some work here as well. Alright, this this is more of a scratch pad these actually like I actually do work within these
So like I do in a weekly newsletter for creative technology, these are just a bunch of
You know things that I'm going to be posting in the near future just keeping notes and bookmarks in here
Or, you know a bigger project might be something like
We're trying to come up with something viral to launch and share the agency with the world
So we're coming up with an idea face two famous. Just a prototype. You can see in a moment my face will appear
And then over the course of a few different seconds
It'll take me three different celebrities all the way to looking like at least a Silverstone
So again
Using yeah using these just as actual work like doing actual work within these tasks
So, yeah, I guess when it comes, you know back to too focused on actual brainstorming part of those ideas
To actually come up with that idea. I think is the area that you'd probably like to focus on and more depth
Prior to to coming up with an idea like face two famous. I'll
Spend a bunch of time brainstorming
And so traditionally, you know, I'll create a new project. I
Have a template for those projects
And maybe I'll pop that over here and
Then this is quite extensive, but I'll go through it fast and then slow
Essentially this is just a series of prompts and resources to help me be creative and help me be strategic
So you can see it's quite long. There's a lot going on, but we'll go through it a bit more slowly
So I'll traditionally use this new project template in conjunction with work on the left so
this is almost like a
Process to focus on the different things that you see a lot there
So for example, well actually brought her to put it we use this thing called double diamond
Okay, which is
Just a framework for coming up with ideas
So that this stuff on the left is kind of like strategy the stuff on the right is creative
So if you you have you have a problem and you start by kind of diverging coming up lots of different ideas
exploring as much of it as you can doing a bunch of research and
then you kind of consolidate that research into different insights or opportunity areas and
Then you get you isolate like a few big opportunity areas and then use those as launching pads to be creative
So ID ate a bunch of ideas coming out of those respective
This is how might we use a standard thing a technology
Okay, we use this process and I'm loosely this takes you through that process so
You can see here. This is like the discovery phase and you work through what I've called bursts and
So maybe you start with breaking down the brief. So I have an example of that when we came up with
That face thing that I showed you earlier
The brief was oriented around something called synthetic media. So I don't know if your viewers are
Terribly familiar with all the deep fake stuff going on
Like face app turning you into an old person and that kind of stuff
I've been really excited by that so we thought you know how might we use personal inputs
To generate synthetic media that people want to share and use that
With that double diamond to really blow it out and come up with a bunch of stuff
So for example, one of those things is to break it down break down that brief and you can see
You know
We have the inputs. So
Sorry rather personal inputs is one of the things that we can break down what our different personal inputs that people can use
Voice text photo what's different media that they could generate?
something on Alexa photo
Where might they share or how can we encourage them to share? Maybe there's a celebrity ruth
often it'll go way deeper than this, but obviously it'd be too much of a mess to share and
So just wanted to give a quick look as to what you know
One of these things looks like when it gets broken out a little bit
But yeah, essentially I'll go through these different tool sets to do research to find inspiration
Often they'll have like a header but then different prompts within them or sometimes they'll actually have resources inside
Yeah, I feel like this is a
As organized as it might look it's actually also a bit of a mess. So I'm happy to keep
One of the questions I had that was
It's really interesting how you've sort of gone about making
Something that you already know about the Double Diamond process and sort of creating it into an area
So am I guessing that this flash area with the burst?
That's like static information and then you create a new
A new row in the table every time you do a part of the process
Inside of that doing things area, right
I'll use this process as a scratch pad to start, you know, I'll break it down over here, you know
Yeah, I started taking all sorts of notes and whatever I come up with
And I'll be able to round to it's not as you know
Oriented as it looks I'll bounce from one part to the other and however, my mind's working
It's more just the things on the Left act as a reminder to bounce to other things if I forgotten
Okay, that's really interesting
Yeah, and and and is it so the the first part the process is bursts, but then does it expand into more stuff?
Yeah, that's right. So after you've done the bursts and built out, you know this part of the process believe this open maybe
You know bursts is kind of this part of the process
Expanded it. Maybe then you look at all the what's come out of all the bursts refine those things into two more
Things that people can understand as opposed to messy notes that I'm just taking and
Then coming out of that
You're gonna start being creative so
That's what we call sparks so there's much more resource here
And what I what I've essentially done is
Pulled from other creative frameworks
to create verges on my own
So there's a very popular creative framework called scamper and you can see here substitute combine adapt
modified put other uses eliminate rearranged
so I've taken scamper and
Put it in these prompts, but also added some prompts to each thing
so maybe you could substitute a place or a person or an emotion and
Then this was both to educate myself and other people as to this framework, but also to serve as a reference tool. I've also
Put thumbnails that correspond to each of the respective
Prompts to show you an example of that
creativity or creative prompting use
so to make this more clear because obviously these thumbnails are a bit too small for people to see an
Example of substituting place. Is this project? Where a
Sorry an ad agency. Can we open it up?
So, this is a project whereby they put this tooth into a person's mouth so that they can open beter with their mouth
And that would be an example of substituting place. Right? Usually the place that happens is on a beer opener
But should be in your hand not your mouth it would be funny if it's in your mouth Oh
All of these prompts correspond to different different ways to be creative and that all of these images are
References for those respective things too to both educate people that are familiar and serve as a reminder
Go ahead, sorry
I was going to say this is really interesting because I think like
particularly myself, and I know a few other people they don't like
Formalize their process and make it like a wick experience like you have where each time you go and replicate something
You can go back to that original resource
So even with your sort of sprint planning with the two weeks
I really like the way that I think I'm going to definitely steal that concept of sort of having a full checklist or a full
Availability of it and then actually just replicating it because yeah, I like the way that you're using pins as well to sort of
You know work alongside to your notion already. It's pretty good
And to your point I think well, especially with the creative process
Lot of people don't want to make that process driven and kind of want to let their mind go a little bit crazy and see
What comes out of it? And I do that too. This this serves more as a reminder to do things that maybe I forgot
In my organic process or all bounced around to different parts of it depending on how I'm feeling
so maybe another example would be
This is sorted but rather
Open this is sorted by
Different types of creative problems that you might have. So if you have an advertising problem
These are all there's a website called deck of brilliance that has 52
Prompts to come up with advertising ideas, and I've essentially pulled that in here and made it a little bit more concise
So if I have an advertising problem, I just go through these 52 prompts and see which one might be most applicable
To resolve that creative problem
so I don't always use everything and sometimes I use nothing but
Broadly, it helps as a tool set to to be creative if you're feeling stuck. Here's another good one
Just a random
Idea to connect random inspiration. So there's a bunch of resources in here. One of which is a random word generator
So if I'm feeling stalking and often creative ideas come from places that are not traditional or linear
I'll force myself to take that brief
You know
something like this and
Make whatever random word Association comes up fit with this idea
and so that only come up with random ideas that you otherwise would
Okay, that's good. That's quite interesting. And how long would you say that it took you to set up this catalog? I
Mean it's not something I did in a sitting
It's you know certain parts of it have come over time
for example, I started with advertising thing and then later I added strategy and I
mean if I had to
quantify how
much time I actually spent all in I
Don't know a hundred hours is just a loose estimate
But about that time so saved, isn't it now that you've done it? Oh
For sure, I mean it you know
In advertising, let's take as an example. Just one create a project that the conception part of it could take 40 hours
You know what I've done here is help myself
Make that take 10 hours instead of 40. So I'm saving 30
Each week that hundred gets made up real quickly. Yeah, definitely
Yeah, there's a bunch of other stuff here so
Yeah, let's see actually we'll move on maybe so
Another thing that happens within organizing and and elsewhere is
You're often routing something in what they call a big idea and that big idea can manifest itself in different channels
So let's take the tooth tooth that we looked at as an example
you know, that's a product but there's also PR and maybe there's an advertisement associated with it and maybe there's
Out-of-home thing where the guys sitting on sitting on a curb and showing and opening people's beer at a bar
it can it can live in a bunch of different places and
What this area does is help you once you have that big idea to?
Orient yourself as to which channels it should it should predominantly live in so, you know
Should it be an app should it be on a billboard?
Should it. Should there be a blimp that's associated with it
And then all of those that are sorted by, you know, just a drive awareness
Does it drive acquisition and there's a drive conversion just a drug retention?
so that if you have a particular problem that you're trying to solve you can sort and
Determine the channels that are best associated to blow out your idea and out of curiosity
Since you've been using this how how many sort of ideas and sort of projects. Have you been working on?
Sure, this this channel area is quite new and actually haven't used it yet at all
But this top area these two in particular
I've probably ran through
30 40 50 bro more probably hundreds hundreds of projects
Using these tools
fantastic and
Yet continue talking it's free
Sir, yeah, the last area that's in here is kind of a reference tool
So these that I use this is essentially like a Pinterest
Bookmarking stuff that is inspiration for the creative process
very well sorted so for example like you're looking at right now is
The same creative project to come up with that face connector
These are all just emerging stunts a viral emerging technology ideas
So, you know
This is an AI painting that made a new Rembrandt using AI or this is an influencer is made with CGI
Or this is AI making seven million versions of Nutella
so tons and tons and tons of creative inspiration here so that when I get a project I can
Sort by whatever, I think the most applicable thing to do is
See, so this is done by media and channel, you know
There's websites and there's experiential and there's video and social and PR
Depending on the project I get a look at a different category and look for inspiration related to that to help spark new ideas
So it's like a like a you'll miss out your brain Bank of all of those ideas for when it comes to it
Yeah, that's really nice. Yeah, I quite liked its visual as well that you can
you can find everything you need there and
And going back to the sort of the doing things area that you sort of
Is it I think I saw on that that you had
Evening routines and things like that. Do you actively used?
It for work and sort of your own life
Yeah, I use a notion for both. So this I mean so a good example is I just moved to New York. I
Have not yet memorized my phone number
But when people ask it's here, or like oh, thank you
I'm waiting on a shipment of books from Amazon or you know, here's places that maybe I want to travel to
More broadly. I keep some of my more personal stuff down here
So like people that I want to stay in touch with or general reference
But yeah, I use notion both for personal and for business extensively fantastic. Well,
Sorry it went a bit with it
Well, Daniel, I really appreciate you taking us through that sort of ideation process and all of those banks that you've created
Where can everyone find you after this? Cool?
Yeah, check out daniel Eckler calm. It's got links to everything i'm doing on the internet
Daniel underscore Eckler at twitter. I'm quite active on
If you're interested in the company, I'm working on how to get launched
But you can go to space cadet at NYC to learn a bit more about that
and yeah, if I can help at all I think one thing that you'd asked in the email is how might other people
create creative processes for themselves
I'm also happy to share
Access to this if anyone wants to duplicate it and use it for their own purposes
Or if anyone else has any questions about how they might set up a creative process
I'm happy to to talk to people about that as well
Yeah, definitely. I know all one I'll grab that link from you and we'll share it in the description
But I appreciate you taking the time out and it's given me a lot of hints for my own day-to-day use of motion
So thank you and I look forward to sharing this one
Thank you. Alright. Thanks, Daniel and talk soon. Yeah
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How Daniel Eckler Uses Notion

593 Folder Collection
Amy.Lin published on October 13, 2019
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