Accomplish Your Business Goals
Updated: Aug 6
"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail."
~ Benjamin Franklin
Start at the end and work backward - define what you want to accomplish. Determine how you will achieve the goal; what strategy will you implement? What tasks are involved in reaching your goal?
Create a list of items to accomplish.
Define the timing of each item.
Let's take a step back before springing forward. Make sure the goal aligns with your organization's vision. How does the plan help you reach your short-term and long-term organizational goals?
Organizational needs are different depending on the state of your organization. Is your company in a growth phase? Is your business in start-up mode? Is your organization a well-established brand? Your organization's state affects how quickly and agile your company is.
For this article, we will only skim the surface of project planning. Watch for future project planning articles for a more in-depth review.
What Comes First
Use organizational goals to define your plan. How will each milestone support your overall organizational goal? Determine what strategies you will incorporate to complete each task. Keeping a keen eye on the corporate direction is vital for long-term success. Make sure each plan supports the organization's leadership and goals.
Rolling out the project in phases may be best for more significant projects. Project phases work well when projects are lengthy or you are testing the waters before fully committing.
Listing your tasks on Post-it notes is a great way to visualize the overall plan. Moving the post-its around on the board helps to establish project milestones.
Assign an Owner to the project.
Determine project budget.
Establish a timeline for the project.
Determine project milestones.
List tasks for each milestone.
Assign an Owner to each task.
List the tasks in the order they should be completed.
Determine the date when each task should be completed.
Document The Plan
Determine the best way to document the plan and expectations. Be transparent with your team. Share all documents and review them collectively, seeking input and support.
Here's an example of a project plan using Google Sheets.
Involve Your Team
Obtain your team's buy-in. Schedule a kick-off meeting with your team. Provide an agenda before the meeting, and share the plan with the team beforehand.
Create an open, comfortable meeting environment to kick off your project. The goal is to get your team's commitment and support for the project. Be prepared to ask questions to get the group talking. Here are some questions that may work for you.
What are your thoughts on this plan?
Do you have any questions or concerns?
Have we left anything out?
Would you like to assist with this project? If so, how?
Any roadblocks or barriers you foresee preventing us from accomplishing our Completion Dates?
Any comments or thoughts you would like to share?
Throughout the project, schedule regular check-ins with your team. Weekly standup meetings are ideal – short, direct, and the frequency keeps the project on pace for success.
Keep a pulse on how the project is developing from a high level. Offer your team the opportunity to share challenges or barriers they are experiencing. Provide input and suggestions to support them along the way.
Pay attention to the body language of your project team. If individuals seem not invested, you may need a one-on-one meeting to get them back on track.
Congratulations, the goal is accomplished!
Now that your goal is accomplished, it is time to celebrate the team's success. Be sure to recognize individuals and their roles in the project's success.
Identify the challenges and how the situations were resolved throughout the project. You want your team to feel appreciated for their hard work and thinking outside the box. Note these challenges, and determine if future employee training is required.
Good luck to you in launching and accomplishing your next project. Project management is a specialty of Imagine Business Solutions. Contact us today for more information.