Making teamwork work.
As a culture, we are obsessed with convenience and efficiency. We invest hard-earned money to streamline communication via technology, we load those devices up with countless apps to increase productivity, we utilize time trackers and to-do lists and spreadsheets and project management tools – and yet somehow, still end up with the sense that we could be managing our time more effectively.
Often, the very things we seek to solve the problem contribute to it, ultimately becoming more to manage during our mostly unmanageable days. Multiply this factor with several people trying to coordinate for a project and you’re likely to have a whole lot of action combined with an abundance of inefficiency.
So how do we save time while spending less of it? Check out the following project management tips to streamline your days, improve your work – and maybe even enhance your life.
But that’s the hard part, right? Right. So, start small and give up on the idea of finding a perfect system to implement immediately. Begin with the project at hand and start with the following questions:
- What are the basic steps necessary to complete this project?
- Which details should be considered for each step?
- When does each step need to be completed by to meet your deadline?
- Who is going to help you?
- How are you going to assess progress?
- Where will you be communicating with your team?
Don’t fall into the trap of taking on too much work because you don’t trust others to get it done. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your team members, and empower them to make appropriate decisions within the scope of their role.
A Procedia Technology survey of 300 project managers in various industries revealed that effective communication was the cornerstone of successful project management, and it could probably be unofficially argued that communication is the catalyst for success in every area of life.
There are two important factors when it comes to communicating with your team: the how and the why.
The how focuses on logistics – the when and where of your group discussions. Invite team members to be an active part of every conversation and practice generous listening; actually listen instead of waiting for your turn to talk. Vary your methods of communication through meetings, conference calls, and written text through email or project management software to make sure upcoming deadlines are clear and instructions are understood.
The why is more interesting, and probably more important. Don’t just tell your team what you’re doing, tell them why you’re doing it. From macro to micro, get into why the work matters. People are inspired by importance. Simon Sinek has a great motivational speech to help you get clear on how to identify your why and which companies do it best; it’s a TED talk well worth watching if you’re interested in evolving as a leader.
With the right planning, communication, and project management tips and tools, collaboration can be an opportunity for personal and professional growth – and the perfect recipe to reduce workplace stress and increase employee confidence.