The best way to begin the task of describing a process is to divide the entire process into smaller, more manageable steps or phases. In this week’s exercise, that’s what you will do. But instead of describing a process, apply the basic idea of the article to the process of managing a project.
Here’s the situation: You are asked to be part of a team that writes a manual for the new hockey team locker room manager. This manual will describe the locker room management process during a home game.
You are given three resources:
- a three-person team of seasoned tech writers; Max, Erma and you
- a file folder filled with typed, copied, and handwritten sheets of documents with various elements of the process written down, in no particular order
- two SMEs; the current team manager and one of the players
Before you can write the manual, you must decide how you are going to manage the project. How you will organize:
- the writing team
- printed data
- the pymes
Briefly, in the order in which the functions will be performed, describe how:
1. Divide the process into manageable parts
2. Organize the responsibilities of writers
3. Organize the documentation
4. Design the content of the manual
5. Use SMEs in the most efficient way
Not everyone will approach the task in exactly the same way, but your approach to managing the project should look a lot like our answer.
When you’re done, check the solution below.
Response to exercise
You have been asked to be part of a team that writes a manual for the new hockey team locker room manager. This manual will describe the locker room management process during a home game.
Not everyone will approach the task in exactly the same way, but here is a possible way to manage the project efficiently.
The first thing to do is break your total wardrobe management process into smaller, more manageable phases. The three phases suggested in the article will also work for this task.
A logical breakdown of the process:
- Phase one: actions taken before a game
- Phase two: actions taken during a game
- Phase three: actions taken after a game
Next, organize the responsibilities of the writers. There are many ways to do this, depending on the size of the project and the theme. For this project, it makes sense to follow the breakdown into Step 1.
Since there are three who write the manual, they divide the work and give each writer a part of the process. You take Phase One: Actions taken before a game. Max takes Phase Two: Actions taken during the game. Erma takes Phase Three: Actions taken after the game.
To get the most out of your documentation, you need to divide it according to the phase to which it is related. His team, with the help of SMEs, classifies documents into three parts; one for each phase.
With the documentation arranged in phases, the team develops a content outline for the manual. Each writer will follow the outline so that the three parts of the manual will fit together when finished.
Since everyone will need to interview both the current manager and the team member, they should develop a plan to use the writers’ and SMB’s time efficiently.
A possible sequence of interviews, to use everyone’s time efficiently, would look like this:
1. Interview with the manager
Max interviews the player
Erma studies documents relevant to her part of the manual and develops an outline for her phase of the process.
2. Max interviews the manager
Erma interviews the player
You study documents relevant to your part of the manual and develop an outline for its phase of the process.
3. Erma interviews the manager
They interview the player
Max studies documents relevant to his part of the manual and develops an outline for his phase of the process.
At this point, everyone can take the relevant documentation and apply it to their content outline based on input from SMEs. You will likely need to talk to the SMEs again and meet regularly with your team to keep the project coordinated. But, with this clearly laid out 5-step project management process, you should have no trouble completing the task.