TightOps is about creating, working, and getting things done efficiently.

Since we are not working in isolation, especially today, TightOps focuses on the team (which may well be a distributed workforce), its interactions and communications.

Cost, time, and effort, can be drastically reduced by implementing and using an apt framework which leverages the people’s skills, the tools, and the technologies that are already available. This enables us to focus on the work that is most meaningful and effective.

TightOps’ mission is to make your company better, more effecient: less in, more out.


TightOps was created by Nico Appel and Max Lielje.

We created the basic idea for Tight Operations in 2012. We came up with it because we really needed it – and as we soon found out, so did others.

As most freelancers and entrepreneurs, we have studied and applied various personal productivity methods; Nico has also worked in software development teams using Scrum (agile software methodology).

But especially in the context of teams, we felt and still feel that there is no team productivity system, a framework providing a structure. Internal communication and productivity are simply missing a few key guidelines.

Back in 2011, we worked in project management and business development at rethink, a growing media agency in Berlin. The young company was hiring continuously to keep up with increasing business.

There was little structure for onboarding new employees other than showing them their desk and a computer to work with. As the staff kept growing, the need for effective communication and more structure grew as well. This proved to be an interesting challenge.

At the same time, Nico had already restructured and reorganized his wife’s company to allow for it to be managed and run from anywhere (location-independently). He took a brick and mortar business and made large parts of it

  1. more scalable,
  2. more structurally reliable, and
  3. manageable from anywhere (with a laptop and an internet connection).

After leaving the media agency, Nico joined Chris Kirkland at ArtWeb.com as head of marketing.

They were determined to take ArtWeb to the next level. Chris had been running the business location-independently (remote) from different parts of the world for a few years.

The team was spread across multiple continents and time zones: A perfect opportunity to adopt Tight Operations and apply our system in project and team management.

From these real life "cases" originated the first written drafts of Tight Operations.

We were tired of how bad communication causes stress and havoc in the form of misunderstandings and additional, unnecessary work. We just wanted to sort out what goes where and who needs to know what to get things done efficiently.

It isn’t that hard if you know how. The tools and technology are readily available. The methodology was not. That’s why we decided to make it available here.

Welcome to TightOps! May it serve you well.