So, the boss has dropped a big project on your desk. How do you go about getting it done?
The most important step in any big project is planning. While you can’t plan for every eventuality, poor planning can and will derail a project.
You need to consider several needs when planning a project.
- Time – how much time is the project going to take. If the project is going to require 20 hours of work and your boss wants it tomorrow, then he’ll need to shell out for some overtime. When considering how much time you need to complete a project, factor in your normal day to day duties and interruptions when deciding if you can meet the proposed deadline. Remember, you’ll need some downtime. If you can’t make the deadline, or you think there might be a problem, let your boss know ahead of time so he can readjust expectations or provide additional resources for you.
- Supplies – make sure you have the necessary supplies on hand for the project. You don’t want to wait until it’s almost done to find out you need to order postcards or whatnot, and it’s going to take you several days to get them.
- Personnel – make sure anyone else you need to work on the project is available. If someone is crucial to the project and is going on vacation, you’ll need to factor that into your planning.
- Conflict with other projects – if you have several projects coming up at once, you’ll need to set priorities between the projects and decide what needs to be done first. Talk to the managers involved to be able to properly prioritize.
Remember, proper planning can make the difference between a job well done and running around frantically trying to get it done. Make sure you attain the former and avoid the latter.