Boost Efficiency and Accountability: The Importance of Process Clarity
Especially when it comes to collaborative projects, most CEOs and business owners understand the value of properly functioning teams, but many would agree that developing those teams is a major challenge. While communication is key, process clarity is even more important.
Process clarity is the concept that each member of a team understands all elements of the project in front of them - the overall goal, his or her role in achieving that goal, each team member’s responsibilities, the timeline, and all expectations.
We’ve all been in situations in our professional lives when uncertainty plagued our projects. Not only does it increase the risk of miscommunications and mistakes, but it also kills creativity and productivity. By clearly defining the process, each team member is able to take ownership of his or her work, while understanding the flow of how it plays into the work of other team members. Questions and uncertainties are replaced with solutions and confidence. Perhaps even more important, team leaders are able to identify gaps in the plan or collective expertise, so they can be addressed early on.
Here are the basic steps for incorporating process clarity into your next project.
Step 1: Clarify the Objective
In order to put the project into perspective, each team member must understand the objective of the project. What is the desired outcome? How does this project impact the larger mission of the company? What will be the benefit for the client?
Step 2: Clarify the Process
Develop a plan with specific tasks and strategies to achieve the objective. What needs to happen to bring the project to completion? Should it be broken down into phases or just tasks? By breaking the project into a list of tasks, everyone knows what needs to happen and how each task plays into the larger goal.
Step 3: Clarify the Roles
Each step in the plan should be assigned to a specific person or group. By divvying up the tasks as a group, each team member understands who is responsible for which elements. Additionally, it helps with the collaboration process.
Step 4: Clarify the Timelines
Once the process and roles are identified, timelines should be set. By allowing team members to be a part of the discussion on deadlines, they are more likely to take ownership of their responsibility to the team. After all, if the discussion uncovers that one person’s task will be on a particularly tight deadline, it’s more likely that other team members will step up to help.
The goal of process clarity isn’t to micromanage your team or cause extra work; it’s to create an objective view of the project and naturally build in a layer of accountability. Process clarity is one of the many ways to increase efficiency within your teams.
Ready to begin finding other ways to make your company more productive? Let’s get the conversation started. Contact Greg Emslie for a business strategy discussion today!