How to use project management tools to manage your team's collaboration?
Reading time: 4 min.
1. Define your goals and scope

1.1 Start with the team's key goals. Every team member should know what the current goals are and where they are written in the project management tool.

1.2 Decompose your main goals into several small goals. Break your goals down into tasks. It's great if your task management tool makes it easy to visually see the relationship between a key goal and a task. This will help the team member working on the task clearly understand what the task is for and what it means for the entire team.

2. Track your progress and performance

2.1 A project management tool provides a good way to control your workflow. However, it does not do this on its own - it requires certain norms, rules and skills to work with this tool.
2.2 A manager who independently works on task statuses in the project management tool (which often happens in reality) adds a lot of workload to himself, while solving this problem ineffectively. A good approach is to create a culture in which every participant in the process, every owner and performer of tasks is in control of the situation and accurately records statuses in the project management tool; and on the basis of this, the manager exercises supreme control.

3. Communicate and collaborate

3.1 The project management tool is designed for effective collaboration and communication. However, it often happens that despite its presence, communication and collaboration are ineffective.

3.2 Why is this happening? Because the use of project management tools is often taken for granted, there are no norms, rules and usage habits. Irrelevant instructions that have nothing to do with the real current situation are not uncommon.

3.3 How to solve that problem? Formulate simple and clear norms and habits for using your tool: both for collaboration and communication. Simplicity and conciseness should be maximum - information should be easily absorbed and converted into actions.

4. Automate and streamline

4.1 Automate, optimize and template parts of your workflow where needed. Project management tools can easily help with these tasks.

4.2 Remember that automation should be approached consciously and carefully. Not all stages of the process can be automated. There are always places where there is a window for human creativity.

4.3 When optimizing the process, leave only the essentials and remove the unnecessary things that create clutter.

4.4 Templates can be useful for quickly creating frequently used, similar tasks.

5. Learn and improve

1. Constantly monitor performance using a project management tool. Keep a close eye on the collaboration. Find growth points and eliminate pain, constantly add insights to your knowledge base.

2. Make changes only when truly necessary. Don't make changes for the sake of change; each new change in the workflow should go through a long stage of implementation and adaptation. Why is it important to do this systematically, on schedule? So that the team learns to expect changes at this very moment, quickly get acquainted with them and get to work.

3. Remember that training a team is a regular, ongoing process that requires a lot of love, patience and time. Be constant, be consistent, be an example.

Key points

1. A project management tool can solve a large number of team collaboration problems if it is chosen, configured and used correctly.

2. Choose project management tools based on your key goals, pain points, and processes. Please don't customize processes to fit your tools, stick to the rule: goals first, then processes, then tools.

3. Don't create processes for the sake of processes. Approach this professionally, maturely and wisely.

4. Be an example in the work process, follow the rules and regulations of working with project management tools, be attentive and punctual; this creates good preconditions for effective teamwork.

Good luck!
Methodologist of Guidbase
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