Aug 2016

3 Simple Tips for Keeping Group Projects Running Smoothly


Image courtesy of unsplash.com

Sometimes the simplest actions can make the biggest difference. Here are three practices our team follows for group projects to make sure everyone is rowing in the same direction:

  1. Send out agendas before calls We want to make sure we’re not misusing anyone’s time with meetings that beat around the bush or don’t have a clear direction. Before calls involving multiple people from various departments, we send out a simple bullet point agenda of key points to cover and who is responsible, for example:
    • Overall Project – Jennifer
      • Review of client responses to our questions
      • Confirmation of deadlines
      • Any challenges or questions?
    • Company Store Progress – Joe
      • When can we see a demo?
      • Any challenges or questions?
    • Warehouse – Karen
      • When can we schedule a site visit?
      • Any challenges or questions?
    • Custom Product Design – Bill
      • Did you get all necessary artwork?
      • Any challenges or questions?

    This tends to keep everyone on point and moving forward, and also encourages each person’s ownership of their responsibilities.

  2. Follow Up with Action Items Especially after calls or meetings where a lot of information is covered, it helps to send out a simple follow up list of next steps and who is responsible. For example:
    • Rough draft of narrative proposal responses to team – Jennifer
    • Schedule internal webinar to show demo site to team – Joe
    • Confirm warehouse site visit and sent invite to team – Karen
    • Send product design proof to team for feedback and review – Bill

    Now everyone is 100% clear on what their next move is.

  3. Keep a Project Brief Document This is simply a high-level, bullet-point Word document that chronicles the project background and progress from day one. What is the opportunity? Key objectives? Pain points? Our team updates this each time the group gets together to make sure new information is noted – latest developments are at the top. It makes for easy reading and is a much-appreciated tool when we pull someone in a couple weeks or even months into a project – kind of like a cheat sheet to bring them up to speed.

Do you have any tips to keep your group projects running smoothly? Please share them in the comments!