4 Reasons You Need A Project Management System

 

4 Reasons You Need A Project Management System AmandaLeighVA.com 1

If you have any projects going on at the moment, you need a project management system.

That would be you!

I know. A “project management system” sounds so intimidating. You may think because you only do (insert what you do here), that you don’t need a system.

I’m sorry, but I think you’re wrong.

A project management system is just that. It is a way to organize everything that you have going on.

No matter what stage you are in with your business, a project management system is essential to staying on top of all of your “to-dos”. (We all know that there are a lot of those!)

I personally love Asana, but there are so many systems out there for you to choose from.

I honestly don’t know what I would do without Asana, so it’s not difficult to come up with 1,000 reasons why you need a system, but I thought 4 would be a good start.

  1. Everything is in one place

Maybe you have sticky notes all over your desk.

You have a notebook full of notes.

Your inbox is full of to-do tasks.

You forget to do things because either (1) you have things written in so many different areas, you wouldn’t know where to look or (2) you never wrote it down anywhere!

You have so many ideas that you try to remember. That project that would be great, but just not at this moment. What about your blog post ideas? Do you think of a great idea, only to forget about it later?

Well, with a project management system, this is all solved. Your project management system will be your one-stop shop for everything that’s going on in your business (and your personal life).

When I open Asana, I see a list of all of my tasks that must be done (with due dates).

I have projects that are filled with blog ideas and notes.

I also have a project for my social media planning, marketing, and client tasks.

There’s something amazing about being able to have one spot for everything!

  1. Keep track of due dates

I mentioned due dates before. It deserves a whole category for itself.

Having all of your tasks compiled in one area is great, but how do you know what to work on?

Have you ever looked at the date and thought “Oh, no! I was supposed to do XYZ today!”

Well, when you have a project management system like Asana, you can enter due dates. That way, anything that must be done immediately will show up on the top of your list. Any tasks that you do not have to worry about at the time will show up on the bottom of your list.

Sometimes, I put tasks in there each year so that I don’t have to think about it anymore – just put it in Asana and it’ll be there when you need it.

  1. Communication becomes streamlined

Do you have to search through your emails to find the ones from your clients?

Then each client will have 1,000 different email chains?

You are trying to find information about a particular project, but can’t seem to find it?

Or maybe you constantly receive emails from clients, or are constantly sending emails to clients, that say “What’s the status on…”.

Can you relate?

Well, it doesn’t have to be like that!

You can use your project management system to correct this time-consuming issue by sharing your system with your clients!

Make a project with information for each particular project. Share that with your clients!

All of your deliverables will be listed out so, at any point, you and your client can see what has been done.

All of your communication can be right in the project. (Feedback, questions, etc.)

There aren’t any more missed/forgotten emails. Nothing goes to spam.

  1. Documents are in one place

Have you ever received (or sent) an email that says “I know that was sent, but I can’t find it.”

What about losing track of how many times a deliverable was edited or not being able to find previous edits/notes?

Any attachments can be stored right in Asana (and most other project management systems out there), so there’s no more scrolling through emails looking for your attachments.

I have many tasks where I update a spreadsheet each week. I post a Google Doc link to that spreadsheet in my task so that I never have to go searching for it!

So,  what are you waiting for?


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here


 

Stay Productive by Planning

Plan to have a productive week in your business and an entrepreneur
How to have a productive week even when you’re an overwhelmed entrepreneur. AmandaLeighVA.com

Staying productive can seem like such an impossible task, but it is completely doable with a plan.

Set out a time every week for a plan. I like to plan on Sundays, but first thing Monday morning or last thing on Friday works as well.

Bonus tip: while planning out your week, make sure you schedule time for batch processing!

Ideally, the planning would include several aspects.

  1. What is your biggest priority for this upcoming week and how are you going to accomplish that goal? (Examples: Write your blog posts, course creation, follow up with x number of leads, big client projects, etc.)
  2. What activities do you do daily? (Examples: Check emails, social media interaction, other client work, etc.)
  3. What appointments do you have set up?

First, look at your biggest goal for the week. What do you have to do every day to complete that goal? For example, if your goal is to write blog posts for next month, start every day dedicating an hour to writing blog posts. If you batch process your blog writing, take one hour on Monday and Tuesday to write your posts, one hour Wednesday and Thursday to edit them, and one hour on Friday to make graphics, format, and schedule them to post.

(Note that I didn’t say to do this after you check your emails and social media, those take too long and can be way too distracting)

Next, schedule blocks of time to work on your business and your client work. Don’t worry about the details just yet!

For example, maybe your week will look like this:

Monday

Tuesday Wednesday Thursday

Friday

Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal
Business admin/marketing Business admin/marketing Business admin/marketing Meetings Business admin/marketing
Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch
Client work Client work Meetings Client work Client work

Everyone’s list is going to look differently. Because much of my work is other entrepreneur’s “business admin/marketing”, I group my email, social media, and Asana updates with my clients, so my weeks look more like this:

Monday

Tuesday Wednesday Thursday

Friday

Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal Work on week’s goal
Check and respond to emails Check and respond to emails Check and respond to emails Check and respond to emails Check and respond to emails
Social media posting Amanda Leigh Marketing Client work Client work Client work
Update Asana Update Asana Update Asana Update Asana Update Asana

After the days are somewhat grouped and batched, it’s time to plan out the details. Try to batch as much as possible together. Do you have multiple clients that you need to create graphics for? Are you creating multiple brand boards or logos? Try to batch like projects together.

I would also suggest not giving yourself exact times to work on these. It just seems like once you start running behind, it’s easy to get stressed and less motivated.

Side note, I can’t talk about planning a productive week without touching on emails and other incoming notifications. You can schedule time open and check your emails/social media, if that’s what you’d like to do. It is known to be best practice to only check your emails at certain times, but I understand how difficult that can be. I do, however, believe that you should schedule a chunk of time to check emails and then perhaps just glance at it throughout the day to satisfy the need to stay at inbox zero.

Instead, provide yourself with a list of tasks from most to least important that you’d like to get done each day, and in each category.

The next day, look at what you didn’t complete the day before and repeat!

How do you plan for your week?


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a FREE Discovery Call here


How to Organize Your Digital Files

Organize your digital files 2 - AmandaLeighVA.com

Do you have documents, images, and all of your digital information everywhere? I know it can get out of hand really quickly.

I like to keep everything I can on my Google Drive so that I can access it wherever I am and allow others to have access.

Keeping everything organized is essential and can save you a ton of time (and aggravation).

First, determine your high level folders. Examples are shown below such as Admin Docs, Blogging, and Clients.

After you’ve determined your high level folders, start creating your subfolders. I like to add numbers in front of my folders so that they stay in a logical order. Examples of subfolders for Admin Docs could be website copy, finances, and freebies.

You can create as many subfolders as you’d like, but make sure it makes sense to you. For example, don’t make a folder 5 deep if you know you’ll never search that far for something. My rule of thumb is to refrain from making subfolders until I feel I have too many documents in one folder, or if I begin to feel overwhelmed. I used to only have my blogging folder, but I found I was confused by the blog posts I was working on and the ones that were finished, so I separated them! Then I realized that I had too many graphics for each completed post, so I added more subfolders for each blog post.

Here is an example of what my digital filing system looks like:

  • Admin Docs – Contains all miscellaneous documents and some subfolders when I see there is a lot of one subject.
    • Website copy
    • Freebies
    • Finances
  • Blogging
    • Blog posts – Completed
      • Subfolders for each post to include all images for different platforms
    • Blog posts – Not completed
  • Clients
    • 0000 – Templates (contains things like contract and proposal templates, questionnaires, welcome packet)
    • 0001 – Almost Client
      • I create a folder for someone as soon as I have a discovery call. This is where their info goes while I’m waiting on the contract (then dragged and renamed to the client folder)
    • 0002 – Past Clients
      • Move all past client folders here
    • 1000 – Client 1
    • 1001 – Client 2

What does your digital file system look like?


 

Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here

How I use batch processing to be more efficient

Batch processing.

You may have heard to term, but do you use it?

If you don’t, you should!

Batch processing is a time management tool where you group like tasks together. By doing this, completing your tasks simply become more efficient.

There are so many examples, but I’ll give you a few of the ones I use most frequently.

  1. Batch process your blogs. I like to be a month ahead, so I do a month’s worth of blog posts at once.
  • I already have outlines in Asana that I put in there as soon as I come up with an idea.
  • One day a month, I block out time to write the following month’s blog posts. I just sit and write. Don’t worry about editing.
  • Another day, I’ll edit all of the posts at one time.
  • I’ll batch process all of the graphics for each posts (for the blog, Facebook, and Pinterest).
  • I’ll then schedule these out for every platform that I use.
  1. Batch process your invoicing.

I invoice once per month, but send updates every week. I will batch process my invoicing by preparing invoices from every client at one time.

  1. Batch process checking notifications.

Do you find yourself with your email and social media accounts open all the time? You can’t get anything done because you’re always checking every email and notification as they come in. Now, I’m not going to tell you to check your emails once or twice a day, but I am going to suggest batch processing this task. For example, if you are working on creating graphics, don’t check anything! Shut off your email and social media accounts. After you’re finished with creating your graphics, take 10 minutes (seriously, set a timer) to check your emails and other notification.

Batch processing makes things so much easier for 2 main reasons.

  • You get less distracted. You are focusing on one task at a time, so your brain isn’t going back and forth between different types of tasks.
  • You get things done ahead of time! Yay! By batching projects together, it forces you to plan everything out. No more waiting until the last minute because it is already done!

What tasks are you going to start batch processing?

Batch Processing Pinterest Image 1  Batch Processing Pinterest Image 2  Batch Processing Pinterest Image 3


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here