A challenge for managing a long-term project is making sure that all the parts keep moving forward. The way I’ve figured out how to do this best is to schedule a brief meeting (20 minutes) with myself after a meeting with project colleagues. I use the mini meeting to put in my calendar the project to-dos that were assigned during the meeting, to block time for tasks that need to be completed ahead of the next meeting. I also use the mini meeting to schedule the next group meeting; in the body of the meeting request I’ll put a brief summary of what we accomplished in the latest meeting and note the agenda for the next meeting. And yep, when I schedule that next meeting I’ll also schedule another mini meeting with myself right after it. I like to mark progress on the project’s Gantt chart, too, to keep an eye on the big project picture.
I’ve found that this kind of immediate organization gives me time to pause and reflect on the accomplishments of the project team at each step of the way, while everything is still fresh on my mind.
Do you have a similar or different strategy for keeping on track? I’m always interested to hear how people manage their time and team-work.