Seminars, webinars, trade show floors, masterminds, social media groups and training classes are all designed to dump a ton of amazing information, content, ideas, processes and best practices. While this info dump is awesome on the day you receive it, when you get back to the office, the real world comes knocking and you barely have time to do what’s on your plate, let alone think about everything you just learned. So, you simply pass the ideas onto someone else—or, worse, put them in the corner with the intent to get back to them later. Well guess what? It’s later.
How is it that some people grow and get things done, while others become professional learners and procrastinators? I believe that it’s more about the process than it is about the person. As a leader, I’ve learned that my job is to share a vision and then remove bottlenecks for my managers so that they can execute the vision. When we as leaders dump information without thinking through priorities or considering how some actions affect other projects, we create a culture where our team is frustrated because they can’t celebrate their wins before the next “great idea” comes their way. I was that leader, that event junkie and idea dumper…until I wasn’t.
It took a leader from another company to tell me that I needed to stop dumping or I would lose my key people. This was a hard lesson to learn because of the fact that, like most leaders, we free-flow ideas. He then shared with me a simple concept called Agile project management, a new-to-me concept that’s common among software development and project management. In fact, team leaders in the IT world spend thousands of dollars learning and understanding to use Agile as they work to become scrum masters. And while there’s an entire culture built around this system and it’s a great concept, it’s too complicated for me. So we created Agile for real estate. A simple Google Drive spreadsheet, Agile allows us to put all of our ideas and projects on a project backlog. We then define the project and give it a number between 100 and 1,000, placing the highest number with the highest priority.
Because transactions are the priority, they’re not on Agile, so first come money-making activities (MMA). These are followed by projects with dates (e.g., client appreciation events and grand openings) and are rounded out with operational excellence projects (e.g., create operations manual).
By asking which category each project goes in, you begin to clearly define priorities for your team. Once a project is set to begin, it’s given a sprint date and a to-do list complete with priorities to execute the project.
The difference this simple process has made in not only my business, but also those of our consulting and coaching clients, is mind-blowing. If you would like a copy of the Google Drive template with a few sample sprints, email me at Verl@WorkmanSuccess.com and I’ll send it over with a video detailing how we use it.
Verl Workman is the founder and CEO of Workman Success Systems (385-282-7112), an international speaking, consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and building successful power agents and teams. Contact him at Verl@WorkmanSuccessSystems.com. For more information, please visit www.workmansuccesssystems.com.