I hope you eat your veggies. (If you don’t we’ll get to that later) If you do, what does the way you eat your veggies say about your project management style?

Well, I realized recently that the way I eat my vegetables is very similar to my project management style. And it’s changed over time. Today, I like to mix them in with the food on my plate. When I was younger  I preferred to get it over with and just eat them in one go. Sometimes I rebelled and refused to eat them at all…those were hungry nights.

So why does the way we eat our veggies matter? Read on and find out.

I eat them quickly so I can get them out of the way.

I get it, this is actually a smart way to tackle something you don’t like by committing yourself to getting it done. Sometimes though if we rush thing through we miss key steps and have to back track later. Moving quickly through a project can also prevent you from actually enjoying the task and accomplishment. Just like some veggies are rather tasty, there are going to be aspects of the project that you’ll really enjoy if you slow down a little bit along the way.

I eat them all together, but only a few bites at a time.

Slow and steady wins the race, but it can make things take longer, and make the process feel more painful. In my childhood days, I remember a few long and lonely nights at the dinner table because I refused to eat something on my plate or was taking so long that everyone got to get up before me.

Going too slow can actually bring you to a standstill and prevent you from moving on to more enjoyable tasks.

I dress them up in lots of fancy sauces and dips.

Your projects are probably impeded by complicated processes and redundant steps. Instead of cloaking your projects (and veggies) in elaborate disguises–simplify. Bring things back to the bare minimum so you can focus on what’s really important.

I save them for last.

So you eat everything else on your plate and then hope that you’ll have room to cram the veggies in afterwards. You adrenaline junkie. Focusing on the fun stuff and delaying the rest puts your back against the wall and makes you reactive. Instead of managing projects, you’re always putting out fires (or getting indigestion) from trying to force all the steps into a shorter period of time. Don’t just focus on the fun aspects of the project, plan the right amount of time for all aspects so everything gets the necessary attention.

I love them and like to mix them in with other things on the plate.

Variety is the spice of life. This is me. As much as I love my work, I can get bored if I’m only working on one thing at a time. So I like to mix things up. I spend time working on one project until it gets to a good stopping point, then I move over to another project. Please don’t confuse this with multitasking. Each project is prioritized and gets its proper amount of focus time.I don’t jump back and forth which really kills productivity.

The truth is that it makes it easier to get things done because you only have to deal with the task for a short period of time. Breaking things down into smaller more manageable bites, oops, tasks. When you add it up, not only have you made significant dent in the project, but you can draw motivation from your accomplishment for the next time by realizing it wasn’t so bad after all.

Don’t eat them?

If you spend time pushing the veggies around your plate, hiding them under the napkin or you just plain don’t eat them you probably don’t mange your projects either. Procrastinating or avoiding distasteful projects completely, just like not eating your veggies, can have negative consequences.

So how do you eat your veggies? Did I miss one. Please chime in and let me know what you think.

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Nicole Chamblin
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Nicole Chamblin

I’m Nicole Chamblin, a productivity coach and trainer who gives powerful yet loving kicks in the behind to women ready to leave procrastination and frustration in the rear view mirror. I would love to help you get back to the top of your priority list and crush your goals. Call me!
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