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Principles for modern knowledge work

Continuous Coordination

Continuous Coordination is a practice for companies and teams that distills lessons learned from 50+ years running knowledge work teams — including remote pioneers like GitLab and Basecamp — and ideas from others that we’ve found invaluable.

The goal of Continuous Coordination is simple. Increase productivity, quality, and engagement by empowering teams with the context they need to work autonomously, and replacing daily alignment-work drudgery with automated, structured communication loops that free up large blocks of time for deep work.

You can read all 7 principles below. Each is powerful individually, but together they’re a rigorous, field-tested plan for building high-performance teams.

  1. an abstract image of radiating circles

    Keep a steady beat

    Ad-hoc approaches to keeping everyone informed and aligned are brittle, time-consuming, and tedious. Replace them with automated, structured communication loops to create a steady beat that keeps everyone in tight sync without all the effort and interruptions.

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  2. stairs leading up to a mountain range

    Lead with context

    “Butts in seats” management is an engagement killer, and a non-starter when you can’t see actual butts in actual seats. Instead, give people the context and coaching they need to make independent decisions that move the business forward. High-autonomy teams are high-functioning teams.

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  3. semi-transparent spheres hanging in space among cube-shaped frames

    Work in the open

    Working in the open builds trust, a prerequisite for high-performance teams. Working in the open turns bottom-to-top information funneling into autonomy-enabling information sharing. Working in the open keeps stakeholders and adjacent teams up to speed without asks and interruptions.

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  4. hands holding a crystal ball with wavy lines reflected inside

    Tell the future

    You can learn from history, but you can change the future. That makes communicating intent across your org an actual superpower. When contributors do it, leaders can course-correct before days/weeks/months get burned. When leaders do it, contributors can drive progress autonomously.

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  5. an abstract representation of a calendar

    Spare the meetings

    The answer to everything can’t be “have a meeting.” Zoom fatigue is real, and people need big blocks of time to do deep work. Save meetings for the high-value stuff — collaborating, team-building — and use async tools for the rest.

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  6. a computer keyboard dissolving into a series of geometric shapes

    Write it down

    Writing helps you clarify your thoughts and ideas before you share them. Writing makes your thoughts and ideas digestible for others. Writing doesn’t require everyone showing up at the same time. Writing is accessible. Writing is searchable. If it “could have been an email”, by all means. Default to writing.

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  7. an abstract image of receipt ticker tape with wavy lines on the surface

    Track output, not input

    When it comes to knowledge work, real productivity isn’t measured by hours clocked, meetings attended, how long a lunch break was, or number of emails sent. Set clear goals, and focus on output and outcomes instead.

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Continuous Coordination is an open-source framework. Visit to learn more.

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See for yourself how Steady helps teams work better, together.