How To Plan Your Project Like a Boss!
📔 Pick one project. This step is crucial. Planning out more than one project at a time is the reason why you feel like you’re doing #allthethings yet not crossing anything off the list. Nothing feels more satisfying to me than crossing things off the list. Ask my clients and their team members – they know that my love language is an Asana task marked complete!
📔 Evaluate. Break it into smaller pieces until you can’t break it down anymore. Think of all the micro steps needed to get a job done.
Let’s take doing the laundry for example. This is one of those tasks that never feels done, right? Let me show you why.
I’m going to list the micro-steps that exist in my mind when thinking about laundry.
- Put away
If you have clothes laying around the house, you haven’t done all the steps in this laundry “project” or “procedure”, and you’re probably stuck between steps 4 and 5 – Fold and Put Away.
If you’re done folding but haven’t put everything away before the next laundry day, your brain might be stuck on Sorting, which is step 1.
Only when laundry is all put away and there is nothing to sort is the laundry ever “done”. And since we are always somewhere between wearing and washing – this is one of those projects that you can never ultimately check the box off on!
📔 Assign and delegate. Assign each task to a person and then this falls under alignment. I don’t necessarily want to talk about teams but I do want to talk specifically around aligning the task with that specific team member.
Let’s look at my team as an example. We have 1 member who has a certain set of skills like organizing so he’s a planner, and then there’s a creative person. So the latter gets all the creative pieces, while the other ensures that all pieces are complete, checked and delivered on time.
It’s very important to keep in mind though that when you are assigning each task to a person, you have to make sure that the task is aligned with that person’s skill set.
Or if you are a solopreneur, make sure that you are properly aligned to do the task. This is why sometimes you’ll be seeing friction and things aren’t getting done.
📔 Commit to the project, which includes assigning each task a due date. You’ve been there, if there’s no due date, it doesn’t get done, amiright?
If you’re using a project managing app like Asana, if there’s no due date assigned, then it just goes to the bottom of the list and it gets lost and buried. Giving a due date puts the task in the queue so that it can get done.
Managing the 4 Major Resources you need to start or scale your next project! Get my The T.I.M.E. Management Principle guide by clicking the button below.
.📔 Execute. ONLY once you lay out your projects like this then, this is where you can start executing. When you execute before you do the previous steps, this is when you experience what I call “churn and burn”. This is how I describe the feeling like you’re doing too much, yet nothing is getting done.
This is why you need to reverse engineer your goals with the steps above. You want to take that project that you picked and then break that bigger goal into yearly, quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily tasks. From what I’ve seen, from engineers back in corporate all the way up to CEOs of companies, the reason why most people have issues getting things done without burning themselves out, is because they’re just looking at their to do list from the perspective of “what do I have to do today” instead of a big-picture perspective that reverse engineers the daily tasks from the bigger overarching goal.
Break it up into small, doable segments so you don’t get overwhelmed, and slip into burnout.
Finally, make sure you plot out your personal life on your calendar first, then map out your business tasks. I’ve had new clients who were so excited to get started. They filled out their intake forms with somewhat astronomical goals with laughable timelines. Then when we meet to discuss, I start breaking everything down into micro-tasks that then get spread out over a few weeks. It’s usually at that point that my clients begin to realize that the reason they’ve been stressed out trying to host an online webinar or masterclass is because it is actually a 3-4 week project that they’ve crunched into a weekend.