5 Steps to Project Management (And How to Get Things Done!) Part I 

 March 11, 2017

Take Ideas and Create Action with Project Management Techniques

  • Are you feeling overwhelmed with your everything you want to accomplish?
  • Are you not sure how to organize and prioritize everything all of your projects?
  • Do you have a ton of ideas in your head, but don’t know how to start executing them?

We all have so many things that we want to accomplish, and yet it seems like there is never enough time to do them all! (Or, at least that is what we think!)

With so much to do in both our personal and professional lives, it is easy to get caught up in the noise around us and not work on what is going to produce tangible results.

Here are five key steps to help you organize and implement your projects today!

Step 1:

Define Your Projects

To set up a project management strategy, you must define your projects! A project is a temporary endeavor that has a clear beginning and end. It is unique - not a predefined or routine process that is continuous.

Asana is the easiest way to manage team projects and tasks.

Remote teams can organize projects, manage shifting priorities, and get work done.

Sample projects include: creating a website, writing a book, developing and launching a digital course and even cleaning your basement!

Think about, and then create a list of all of your projects. Write them down on a piece of paper before moving to the next step.

Step 2:

Prioritize Your Projects

Project management requires you to prioritize what is most important to you. When you prioritize, you are creating an order of importance around your project. Meaning, one item has a higher value than another.

Create priority within your projects. Identify what project is priority #1, #2, #3 and so on.

If you need help determining the priority of one project over another, consider the following questions:

  • Is the project important or urgent?
  • What is the value of the project when completed?
  • How much effort will it take to complete?
  • What is the cost to complete? 

These questions are important to consider because if a project is going to require resources that you do not currently have available, then it cannot be a higher priority than a project that you have resources for right now. Or, if one project is going to create revenue sooner than another, you may want to do that project first to have resources available for another.

Additionally, a project that has a hard deadline of one month away would need to have a greater priority than one launching in six months. Otherwise, you are going to miss a deadline!

Next to your list of projects, number them from highest priority to lowest.

Step 3:

Define Your Tasks

Project management also requires you to look at all of your tasks. A task is a piece of work or unit of work, that must be done to complete a project. A project is made up of multiple tasks and sometimes even subtasks.

If my project is to write a book, my tasks and subtasks may include:

Project Task List

Next, to your projects, start to think of all the tasks that are associated with this project and write them out.

Step 4:

Estimate the Time to Complete

In your project management strategy, each task should be broken down into one day of work or less.

We each have our definition of “one day of work". A day of work is the amount of time that you can spend on this project, each day. If you don't have time each day to work on tasks, consider designating 1-3 days each week that you can accomplish tasks on.

For example, if I can spend one hour per day on my project, my day of work is one hour. Therefore, none of my tasks should be estimated to take longer than 1 hour of work. If they do, I need to break down my task further. 

Next, to each one of your tasks, estimate out the time to complete it. Write this number next to the task. If a task is too large for you to complete in your "one day of work," break it up into smaller sub-tasks that you will be able to complete.

Step 5:

Schedule Your Tasks

To ensure you execute your project management strategy, give each task a due date and then schedule the task on your calendar.

I recommend that you schedule your "one day of work time” at the same time every day (or as close to it), as. This way, you will begin to build a routine of when and where you will be completing your tasks. Scheduling will help with your focus and ultimately enable you to be more productive.

Desk with Calendar

What's Next?

On your paper review your project list, priorities, task list, time to complete and schedule. Set up time on a weekly or monthly basis to conduct a project review. Continue to work through the steps above during each project review. Within a few weeks, you will start to see all of the ideas in your head, start to come to life!

Do you have any questions on my five step process?  Please leave them in the comments below, and I will make sure to get back to you!

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