My User Guide

Several months ago, my company’s CEO, Jay Desai, was featured in the First Round Review in a piece titled The Indispensable Document for the Modern Manager. The feature was about Jay’s “user guide” that he had written for his team that outlines the way he works and how his team can work with him most effectively.

From the piece

He’s seen too many immensely talented and productive teams stall because of a subtle misunderstanding on how to best work with each other. After consecutive year-long searches for his Head of Product and Head of Operations, he didn’t want to squander that investment because he couldn’t figure out how to work with them.

So what did Desai do? He penned a user guide — similar to the kind that’d accompany a rice cooker or bassinet — but this one deconstructed how he operated optimally, when he might malfunction, and how others could use him to their greatest success.

This guide has been a great help to Jay’s direct reports and many others across our company.

As the piece mentions, Jay inspired me to write my own user guide.

I’ve found it to be invaluable — especially for my newer hires. Rather than taking several months to figure me out they can cut right to the chase and get lots of context on how to quickly start working together most productively.

I highly recommend writing a user guide and sending it to your team and asking them to do the same.

See my user guide below. I’ve embedded it as a Google Doc so any changes I make to it will flow through to this post.