4 Key Elements of a Plan with a PurposeJul 28, 2021
You’re starting to gain traction on bringing your vision to life.
✅ You used the heart and mind questions to get your team onboard
✅ You’re structured for success
Now it’s time to establish a plan … a plan with a purpose!
Building a project plan can be as simple or as complicated as you make it. At its simplest, a project plan defines the who, what, when, and how of the project. A complicated project plan does not equal a more effective project. There are shortcuts based on the scope of your implementation – but below are the building blocks.
In order to cross the finish line you need to know who is doing what and when. It’s that basic. What, when, who and how. Here is what you need to ask your team to build:
This starts out easy enough. They are called action items. The “what” will be fluid as you will undoubtedly add action items as the project progresses. In addition to this list of action items, you’ll want your team to think about critical path. Simply put – what action items are dependent on other action items, what needs to happen before another action item can start or be completed. For example – if you are opening a restaurant, you need to know what you are going to serve and how you are going to price your offerings before you can print menus.
Very likely your project team will own most action items. Role clarity is imperative. If you don’t have clarity on the who – your team risks duplicating efforts and missing deadlines. The key is to not waste time or resources – and lack of role clarity can be a project killer.
Another “who” in your project plan is your governance board. Make sure your plan includes governance board check-ins at the appropriate times.
Lastly, you will likely tap in to resources in the broader organization – either based on project team member capacity, or the need for specialized skills. It’s important that this be reflected in your plan so that there is transparency with regards to the full number of organizational resources dedicated to the work.
There are a number of ways to think about the timeline for any project. You should start with the end in mind. Is there are deadline for getting the work implemented? Is it self-imposed, or does is it dependent on other work? You can manage your timeline based on the number of resources available? Or are you free to add resources to meet a specific timeline?
If your project team members are continuing to work their full-time jobs, you will want to look at their overall workload to ensure that the timeline is realistic. The timeline will be a primary topic of conversation with the governance board in terms of uncovering project risk. Outside of budgetary risk, missing deadlines is the most common challenge of managing a project.
How do you know if the project is progressing as planned? How do you know if you are on schedule? How do you know what workstreams are at risk? How do you know if your resources are being maximized, but not over stretched?
You have to work the plan. You have to follow the plan. You have to track the plan. You have to adjust the plan. The plan has to have a purpose. The purpose is to launch your big idea without wasting time or resources.
If you have these components in place, regardless of the tool, your team will maintain forward momentum in an organized way, expose challenges that need to be addressed, and allow for midcourse adjustments that bring YOUR BIG IDEA across the finish line.
This may not seem like work you are interested in doing on your own. No need to worry – that’s perfectly normal and 100% OK. But while you may not be the one building the plan – you do need to know what to ask for, and what to look for, to know you have a plan with a purpose. You may still be wondering who on your team are you going to turn to.
This doesn’t need to overwhelm you! These details don’t overwhelm me – that’s what I am here for. I focus on forward momentum, connecting the dots, generating traction and building a roadmap to get your team AND your vision across the finish line!
When you’ve got the team onboard, you’ve got the governance and project structure in place and a plan with a purpose, then what’s next? Check my other blogs where we talk about developing a communication plan and measuring your success.
If you don’t want to wait any longer and you’re ready to get started – let’s jump on a call. Click here to schedule a free strategy session so that we can create a customized plan to move your idea to implemented reality.
Let’s do this!
About Me: I'm Heather Havey and my consulting business helps visionary leaders bring their big ideas to implemented reality. I’m passionate about efficiency and business transformation, and I will empower you to accelerate the achievement of your big goals. I offer customized, no-nonsense, real-world solutions designed to position you as the hero in the reinvention of your business.
Check out options for how we may be able to work together at https://www.heatherhaveyconsulting.com/services .
And if you think you could benefit from having an expert partner with real-world, action-oriented change solutions that will absolutely work, let’s chat. In your free strategy session we’ll get those ideas out of the clouds and onto the road to results. Schedule a complimentary strategy session to talk about bringing your vision to life.