In the first part of our blog series, we have already taken a look at how you can better structure your day-to-day work for yourself. In the second part, we'll look closer at another way to coordinate your team and create focus.
Here we will focus on the scenario of team meetings later on. Everyone has certainly been to unstructured meetings where thousands of new tasks have emerged out of the sudden. In the end, everyone leaves the meeting room stressed and overloaded, not knowing which task to start with. Below you will find an easy way to solve this problem with InLoox.
Step 1: Communicate goals transparently
The first step towards being able to work in a focused way is to set goals. Especially in larger teams it is important that everyone knows about the goals of the project. In order to keep goals comprehensible and visible for everyone, we recommend the note function on the support page of the InLoox project. The project team has access to these notes at any time. A quick notification can be easily sent for new notes. The notification function saves an enormous amount of time. Instead of informing everyone about the new note by e-mail, you simply notify them directly with InLoox.
Goals can, for example, be defined using the SMART method:
- S – Specific: A goal should be as precise and concrete as possible (e.g. "Construction of a single-family house in solid construction with 125 sqm living space on a hillside property with completion by 30.11.2023").
- M – Measurabler: Making goals measurable -> naming a quantity structure, a time or other measurable criterion (e.g. "adherence to the project budget of 300,000 euros" instead of "low project costs")
- A – Achievable: Goals must be accepted by the project team and key stakeholders and shareholders for the project to succeed. (e.g. "plastering the house in the same scheme as the other houses in the neighbourhood")
- R – Reasonable: Closely interlocks with the previous point: Realistic goals are more likely to be accepted and motivate more than those that do not seem feasible in advance. (e.g. "Completion of the house by 30.11.2019")
- T – Timly: A further criterion is the naming of detailed time information, such as for milestones. (e.g. "ground floor ready to move in by 20.11.2013" instead of "ground floor ready to move in early")
This is how you proceed to note goals in the project:
1. Open the project from the project list by double-clicking.
2. Support page opens: In the note area on the right side, store the most important goals.
3. If necessary, format the text using the Format tab and highlight important points.
4. Notify about the new note: Here it is possible to notify different project roles (project team, project manager, customer, partner, etc.). These correspond to the resources stored on the left under Responsible. Of course, it is also possible to notify individual persons. They are selected via the address book.
Step 2: Set up a prioritization matrix
In the next step you build a simple matrix - similar to the global to-do list (see 1st part of the blog series). The difference is that we now create it in the Kanban-Board, i.e. in the task area, of the project. Thus, the matrix does not serve for personal self-organization, but for the general organization in the team.
1. Switch to the Task area in the project.
2. Here we individualize the status in order to prioritize tasks better. To do this, click on Edit >> Edit status.
3. Adjust the current status and add more until you have the following columns:
- Time critical
- Time-critical & Important
Note that InLoox always recognizes the last status on the right as "Done". I.e. no matter what you call this column, the tasks you drag here will be marked as done by InLoox.
With the help of this matrix, you can now work in the team on a prioritized basis. The importance of the tasks can thus be defined together in the team and the to-do's are processed according to priority.
Step 3: Coordinate project meetings via mind maps & matrix
How do you use this matrix in everyday project work? The matrix is particularly useful for structuring meetings. The best way to do this in a meeting is as follows:
1. Use the mind map during the meeting to record and structure important points.
2. Some new tasks will certainly arise during the meeting. These will also be recorded in the mind map.
3. At the end of the meeting, you can select the nodes that you want to use as project tasks and transfer them to the kanban via the tab Edit >> Create tasks >> Selected nodes.
4. In the task area you enter the resource that will take over the task.
5. Now you can define the priority of the new tasks together with your team.
At the end of the meeting, everyone will leave the room and knows exactly which tasks they still have to complete and which task they need to do first. So you make sure that there is no complete chaos in meetings and that your staff and colleagues leave the meeting motivated at the end.
Very important tasks can then be synchronized with the Outlook calendar. To do this, select the corresponding task in the Kanban board and click on Edit >> Synchronize with >> Outlook Calendar.
You can set the task status individually for each individual project or globally for all projects using the InLoox options.