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I should start this post off by saying that this is NOT an ad in any way, nor are we sponsored by the following software company. So, let’s get into it.
Your attention has been caught by this ever-so-thoughtful blog title—so what is the answer to streamlining your team’s success? The answer is simple: utilizing a project management software.
Over a year ago, Bluleadz was introduced to Jira, and life as we knew it was changed for the better. Jira is ‘an agile project management tool that supports any agile methodology, be it scrum, kanban, or your own unique flavor.’.
When your team is working with multiple clients, you tend to have a wide-range of tasks that need to get done on a daily basis. Generally, these tasks change week-to-week as well.
This is something that Bluleadz has struggled with. We got the job done, but we were losing organization of what was getting done and the importance of the tasks that were being completed.
Is this moving the needle for our clients? Are we just doing busy work because it’s what the client asked for? What did this task achieve?
All of these questions came to fruition when it came to that time of actually wanting to expand the company. Now, I can go on and on about the struggles the team faced before Jira, but I wouldn't want to bore you with any specifics.
The point of this post is to give some light to you and your team on how making a simple change to utilize a project management tool can greatly help your company succeed.
So, How are Things Different for Bluleadz?
For one, we now have complete transparency within our team members. We all have a weekly two-hour meeting to discuss how the following work week went. What did we do good? What could we have done better at? What was our utilization rate?
All these questions get answered on a weekly basis and it’s a moment that our team truly gets to be 100% honest and reflect on our team’s work output. This transparency and these meetings have helped our teams grow into little family pods.
We look out for each other and by listening, we learn ways to help each other out in the future. All of these comments from the team, as well as our completion numbers, are then jotted down in a Jira report and can later be accessed by leadership.
This newfound transparency paired well with the fact that Jira also uses Kanban boards and each team member can properly see what each other are working on, have yet to work on, etc. These kanban boards actually lead in to another important reason that Jira has helped Bluleadz.
In the kanban board, there are six columns in which your tasks will reside in. First there’s “Planning,” then “Ready,” “In Progress,” “Internal Review,” “Acceptance,” and “Done”. What’s most important to note in this list is “Internal Review” and “Acceptance”.
This is where your task will be reviewed by TWO different people on your team. This very simple extra step has GREATLY improved the work we are completing. This allows various people within your team to see your work, comment, and make suggestions. This is not only important for catching errors and mistakes, but it has increased our team’s collaboration.
When individuals collaborate as a team, it increases creativity, innovation, personal growth, and an overall open-mindedness to new ideas. The time of sitting-in-your-cubicle should be non-existent. It’s not productive. Listen and learn from your team and you can become a force to be reckoned with. Well, maybe not to that extreme, but there’s certainly a sense of satisfaction when your team is creating kick ass work.
Jira has also helped us take the time to create tasks that will move the needle for the client. Jira allows us to be more organized and with every task completed—we can create a report for the client at the end of the month. What was done? What the important numbers are and if we reached them.
This opens the dialogue with the client and within the team to try new things or keep doing what we’re doing because it’s kicking ass. Since Jira supports the agile methodology, it’s also extremely fluid and simple to take out and pull in a task. At the end of the day, this assures that all necessary tasks get completed.
Lastly, everything that we need to plan for our clients to succeed is in Jira. We have reporting, strategy docs, internal team playbooks, and, of course, a backlog of tasks. Utilizing all of these features in one software has been a one-stop shop for all of us.
No longer do we have to go through Google docs or hidden folders to find our strategy documents. Everything is open to the team and can be accessed at any time. This is the core of streamlining Bluleadz for better organization and planning.
Taking Steps for Your Company
Is your company facing some of the issues that Bluleadz had? Are you looking to grow your company and want to be sure your team stays organized and focused? You should absolutely look into utilizing a project management software within your company.
Perhaps you want to try Jira out? You’re in luck: here, you can check out their plans and even try them out for free. If you decide to incorporate such a software, I know it will streamline your company’s growth and success, as it has ours. Go forth and be great.
Published on May 9, 2018