Project management tools small business

Simple Tools That Can Make Big Impact Business Progress 

Often we find that our clients have a great idea, but they don’t always leave themselves enough time to complete all of the tasks required to meet their goals within the timeline. Of course that sets the pace for everyone else to play catch-up right along with them.

This is the reason why Project Management is a core component of what we do. We would never be successful at delivering services to you guys without an easy way to document what’s needed and keep track of all of the steps required to get there.

We whittle down huge undertakings into bite-sized projects. Achieving incremental goals helps us to keep budgets manageable while delivering what our clients need in a reasonable timeframe. 

Our toolkit is compromised of some simple, free or inexpensive ninja apps that keep us on track. The essential tools generally fall into three categories. We share two of our favorites in each category so you can pick what is right for you.

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Preparing to Have Work Done

When you call a plumber you would never say. “I don’t know what I really want, but I know I want my pipes not to leak”. You tell the plumber exactly what is wrong and what you expect the outcome to be. You do this so he doesn’t charge you for work you don’t need.

When you go to an agency or freelancer of any kind for business services be as specific as possible when describing your business challenges. It is of course up to the agency to identify the best options for solving those challenges.

If you are preparing to start talking to service providers about your business needs, always start by preparing a simple request for quote. A request for quote is a document that will help everyone clearly understand what you are asking for.

This is our simple RFQ template.

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UX

Buyer Persona + Use Case = Great User Experience

Comprehension of who your customer is, what they want, and when they want it, is key for your business to grow.  It seems the modern consumer complains about privacy, but ultimately consumers prefer to do business with companies who make the experience personal and seamless.

When you implement customer modeling along with experience mapping, your customers will share and return for this positive experience.

 

Customer Modeling/ Buyer Personas

Start with answering the most basic questions:

  • What products/services do you provide?
  • Who buys or needs to buy this from you?

The goal is to explore and document the who, what, and why of your audience.  Once these are documented, move to how they make buying decisions. Who influences them to buy? What do they read or watch? What other types of buying decisions do they make?

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Better email

6 Ways Project Managers (or anyone) Can Communicate Better Via Email

By Wendy Dangerfield

Even with all of the “I hate excess email” articles and countless webinars and trainings around email etiquette, we still end the day with an inbox stacked full of hundreds of emails, mostly unclear or unanswered because we don’t know what the ask was or when we needed to take action on something. Nope, I am not an a fan of email these days. We send email in an effort to streamline communication and be more productive, but we defeat the purpose all too often.

 

How many times have you just stared at an email wondering “now what do they want me to do with this?” If you feel this way, chances are the recipients of your long, very detailed (but probably cryptic) messages feel the same way.

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