Agency Project Management Resolutions For Creatives

Ah, New Year’s resolutions. Those goals we’ve promised ourselves – get in shape, get organized, get our agency streamlined – they all start off looking so hopeful, but then it’s back to our old ways by the end of January! Let’s face it, willpower alone isn’t going to help you achieve your goals.

What you need is a plan and a system in place. Resolutions focus your mind on the long-term picture, and give you a sense of what the ideal situation would look like. They’re great for getting your team excited, but not so great when it comes to the ‘how’ and the ‘when’. Answering how you will achieve something and when you will start/ finish a goal requires a few things to be considered.

Here are 6 factors to consider when jump-starting your agency resolutions:

Starting Early and Brainstorming

Now, you might be thinking, ‘we have plenty of time to get our resolutions going’, but starting now rather than later provides your team an advantage when it comes to meeting deadlines. You won’t need to dodge any unforeseen hurdles or sweat the last-minute details. Remember all the fun you had managing project fires so close to a deadline? Yeah, not so much.

At Function Point, our marketing team starts goal setting with a brainstorm meeting. And believe it or not, there is a right way and wrong way to brainstorm.

I can’t stress enough how important a brainstorm meeting is at the start of any new project. Productive brainstorming can provide a framework for each of your goals and answer crucial project questions like the “why”. It’s also an opportunity to pump up the energy level, inspire people and fortify team bonds.

Planning and Creating a Timeline

Breaking down your long-term goals into smaller, realistic parts is the next step towards crushing your resolutions. For each part of your goals, ensure you’re clear about what you want to accomplish and by when. In our marketing department, we call this “the definition of done”. When you have a clear “definition of done”, you and your team will know what to work towards. There are no shortcuts, or relying on something being “good enough” because you ran out of time.

To help your team complete goals on time, outline what must be completed in the schedule description within your beloved project management software. It’s never a bad idea to be clear and specific about what exactly needs to be done. This is especially important when your whole agency uses an all-in-one project management software as your main reference point for all project-related work. You want your entire team to rely on the system to not only keep you on time but also to stay within the scope of the project.

Reviewing and Being Accountable

How do you make your team accountable to their jobs? What are some ways to help staff members keep the work pace fast and projects moving forward.

At FP, one of the ways we do this is through a daily meeting we call “the huddle”. In the huddle, each staff member shares what they will we be working on that day and identify any roadblocks. Often times when people state their roadblocks, other staff members go out of their way to help them move forward and get unstuck.

Similar to the daily huddle, within the fp. marketing department, we have two status meetings per week to review current tasks and jobs being worked on. When you have multiple projects on the go at once, these status meetings are helpful for keeping your teammates in-the-know, maintaining the momentum of the projects, and cutting down on the number of emails to follow-up on. Who has time to answer 50+ emails a day, anyway?

Are you committed to keeping everything organized and achieving your project management resolutions this year? Function Point Productivity Software is specially designed for creative agencies looking to improve their productivity and profitability by streamlining processes. Our integrated software combines project management, time tracking, CRM, financial and business reporting tools in one convenient cloud based system. To learn if a project management software is the right solution for you, check out our Buyer’s Guide eBook.

This article was written by former Function Point employee, Bealaine Pamandanan.

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