Five Steps to Take if you are Stuck

Posted on April 29, 2015 By

I think we all get stuck sometimes on a project or task.  It’s just not our day.  The computer malfunctions, the delivery is late, or the math just doesn’t work in your favor.  Project management doesn’t hinge on how wonderfully perfect you are at any particular moment; it’s how you resolve the problems that counts.

Here are a few suggestions on how to everything go a little bit smoother.

  1. Build time into your calendar to review the project before its released to the public or even your team.  Take some time off from the project; whether a day or a mid-day meal.  Then revisit to make sure it is logical, properly documented and ready to go.  90% of mistakes can be prevented by this one simple step.
  2. Don’t be afraid to have someone else look at your project.  Even well known writers use editors to review their work before publication.  It’s easy to make basic mistakes.  Our minds supply the missing information in our own work.  The mistakes would be simple to spot in others work.
  3. Did you invent the wheel?  If not, try searching on google or other search engines for potential solutions.  Sometimes this ‘solutions’ will be bull pucky or not even likely to work.  However, they can get the creative process working again.
  4. Go outside, turn off your phone, and walk for about a mile.  Physical activity is likely to trigger your unconscious mind to find a solution.
  5. Outline the steps that you need to complete your project.  Go back and check that each one has been completed.  Primary source data corruption is a likely problem.  For instance if you add a column to a pivot table, it will likely not work after that.  Vlook up formulas require unique identifiers to correctly computer the information.
  6. People are causing the problems?  I know it’s frustrating when team members don’t finish their part; but stewing about is likely to not change anything.  For instance, instead of a group email condemning them; try walking over to their desk and having a conversation about it.  It might be they have been sick, they’ve been told to work on a different project, some other random reason for not getting you the information.  Then work together to find a solution.  Maybe that intern is willing to lend a hand.
  7. What would you put here?
Laura Dodson
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Laura Dodson

Laura Dodson, CPA is a Seattle Financial Planning & Analysis consultant.She has attended Western Washington University, Pierce College and Bates Technical College. She has written four accounting instructional books. She has worked for small family businesses, mid-sized businesses and a Fortune 500 company.She founded and operated Blue Stone Accounting LLC for five years.She currently runs Paper Butterfly Forge LLC.
Laura Dodson
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