When a project is in full swing, monitoring output and productivity is tough. Knee-deep in clutter and driven by meeting deadlines, the organization of a project and its team can be nothing short of chaotic.
If this describes you and your team the hard truth is that as a result, productivity is slipping. To get it back, you need to recognize the signs and make changes. But what are the signs?
#1 Organization is chaotic/lacking/none at all
We hinted at this in the opening paragraphs. When everything looks and feels chaotic, it is. Being organized is across the board, from your desk to your thoughts, to who is doing what and when. There are many reasons why chaos ensues but lack of organisation is the biggest.
#2 Too simplistic/over complicated
There is a scale of being organized in project work. In some cases, chaos reigns and productivity drops like a stone because the approach is too simplistic. Simply making a to-do list is overwhelming. Where’s the detail? Who is doing what? By when? How?
But there is the polar opposite in which managing the project is too complex and prescriptive. Too rigid a process leads to people not being able to move within the confines of boundaries thus inefficient practice even when it is recognized, cannot be changed because the parameters don’t allow it.
#3 No rewards and no breaks
Working on a project shouldn’t be all work and no play. It is known fact that people working without breaks or reward are not as productive as they would be if they took 10 minutes away from their desk. If you and your team are walking into the office and its heads down until home time, productivity will slip through the day.
#4 Not keeping tabs on what is and isn’t happening
You may think you have a great system, and your people talk to one another but if you are so busy that you are not staying on top of progress, then how do you know in which direction your team should be traveling?
#5 You have no priorities
To do lists are all well and good but if your only goal is to get the project completed by a certain date and time, productivity slips. For productivity to be at full speed ahead every day you work on the project, you need to set interim goals. These may be related to aspects within the project or you may assign interim dates.
#6 People can’t get hold of you or you are not responding to people
Do you have an inbox of unread email as long as your arm? This is another sign that chaos has gripped your project and rather than paddling forward, you are fighting to stay afloat. This doesn’t mean you are not working hard but it means you may be working on the wrong stuff, at the wrong time.
#7 There is no schedule
No schedule. No to-do list. No goals. Just everyone with their heads down, doing ‘stuff’.
If you spot any of the signs above, then it may be time to make some changes.