These last couple of months have been a little manic at Virtual Miss Friday, we've been introducing new clients, making shifts inside the organisation structure of the team, putting a host of new processes and procedures in place and taking on some larger scale projects which has meant things haven't always been smooth sailing - so how do we handle times like these when everything gets a bit too much? Read on and I'll tell you.
It happens to the best of us...
Things such as:
- Team members coming and going.
- Projects starting, progressing and ending.
- Clients going MIA or suddenly needing more support.
- New clients coming on board.
- Or generally work and tasks taking longer than estimated or anticipated.
- Not to mention holidays, sickness and any other kind of unexpected or expected absence.
A cocktail of variables such as these on top of the normal daily workload can upset the "ebb and flow" of any business no matter how well organised it is, or how established it is. Storms can occasionally brew on the calmest of waters.
For the last couple of months we've been ebbing and flowing at Virtual Miss Friday, some members on my team have been coming into new roles and learning new skills, others have taken on a higher workload and we've had the privilege of working on some great, albeit fairly large projects, and I've put the following in place to help at times like these which hopefully can help alleviate stress and pressure on the team or individuals and get the work done in as balanced a manner as possible.
Structuring the team.I have a very specific structure to my team, and depending on the size you will need to structure your business and the people within it accordingly.
- There's Me...
- An Administrative team leader
- A Marketing team leader
- A Creative team leader
Then each team leader heads their own teams of individuals who have a variety of skills to match the tasks that are being processed.
This is the core structure for the business.
Starting at the Stern.
If your workload means that there will be tasks outstanding on your list outside of the due date or 48 hour turn around period then you need to notify the team leader immediately to help you manage the workload."
This just helps to provide a guideline and manage expectations.
Moving to the deck.
2 - Assess if any tasks that have been delegated by the team leader could be done by another team member who's schedule is more open/available. In such an instance, the first thing to do is re-delegate and then they can complete those tasks either themselves (team leader) or via another team member.
3 - If any work has been delegated to the team member directly by a 3rd party (such as another team leader for example, or in many cases this will be me!) you'll need to contact those people directly to see if there's any flexibility in their due dates or tasks.
"Urgent Notice - [name of team member] is currently experiencing a high workload and we're looking to prioritise tasks, can you let me know of any urgent or concrete deadlines that must be met, and also could you update or let me know of any tasks that could have the due date extended?"
You would wait for the person to respond with their feedback so you can help the team member with prioritising their work.
And finally the bow.
Don't worry if on occasion this happens, it's bound to, but with these measures in place you should be able to work through the bumps and come out on the other side just fine!
Don't forget to thank your team for all their hard work and cooperation :-)