10 Secrets To Make Your Checklist Efficient
Checklists are a way to make sure you don’t forget anything and can be used for everything from building furniture to packing your suitcase before a vacation. But how do you make them work? What should they include? And what if you have multiple checklists that need to connect with each other or share information?
Check out these 10 secrets:
1. Keep it simple
Make your checklist as short as possible, but still cover all the steps needed to take care of the project at hand. The goal is not just efficiency, but effectiveness too! You want your list so straightforward that anyone who sees it would know exactly what’s expected of them when following through on the instructions provided by the list—without having any confusion or doubts about what must be done.
2. Use The Right Tools
This means using a tool that is user-friendly, reliable, and easy to integrate with other systems, so you can save time by not having to input the same information over and over again. The best options are those that are web-based, but if you have to opt for a different kind, then make sure it can be easily exported to other platforms.
One great tool you can use when making daily checklists is Venngage — an online checklist maker and one of the best infographic makers that provides a wide range of checklist layouts for everyone. Here are some checklist examples from their website!
3. Create The Right Environment
Everyone who’s involved in this process should be aware that they’re creating and following a list and should feel responsible (and comfortable) with using it to their advantage. Start by having them write down the list themselves, then show them the benefits of following it. Once they feel comfortable with its use, you can either maintain control over it through one point of contact (a project manager assigned to oversee their work) or give everyone access and let them manage themselves.
4. Make Sure It’s Flexible Enough
The list should include all aspects needed for the process to run smoothly. That means making sure your checklists are updated in real-time, so no one gets stuck with unanswered questions that may cause delays or mistakes later on. Every step is important and should be thought about carefully, then added to the list accordingly.
5. Checklists Are Not Stand-Alone Tools
Use them in conjunction with other solutions. We mentioned using them within other tools, but they can also be used in conjunction with checklists provided by others. It’s sort of like the old adage about leading a horse to water. Even if you provide all the tools your team needs to succeed along with their checklist, if they don’t use them then you will never see the results that you want.
6. Create A Team Mentality
This is where you need to make everyone feel like they’re part of something important, even if they are only on the team temporarily (like the contractors who may be filling in for someone on maternity leave). This can easily be done by having them write down their own checklists and showing them how it can benefit their process too. If you’ve been in the business long enough, then you know that there’s something about having a “job well done” by others that plants a seed of interest and pride in one’s work.
7. Define Your Checklists’ Purpose
Every checklist should have a specific goal in mind; make sure that this is clear enough to everyone who’s involved in the process.
8. Take Time To Make It Work
Like most things, creating a perfect checklist (or any other solution for that matter) takes time and patience. It can be frustrating, but once you start seeing the results, then the effort will seem all worth it. But remember that it will never be perfect, so make sure there’s always room for improvement.
9. Be Wary Of Over-Engineering
There’s no need to get wrapped up in minutiae or waste time making something more complex than it needs to be. A good checklist should include only relevant information, nothing more. If you find yourself getting carried away with unnecessary details, then stop and look at how you can simplify it.
10. Keep It Positive
When using checklists to streamline your process, it is important not to fall into the habit of only listing all the things that must be done or checked off. A more effective approach would be to list all the positive outcomes that could happen if certain tasks are completed.
It’s true that many people feel that checklists are old-fashioned and should be left back in the pre-computer age, however, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Checklists are more important than ever for streamlining processes and avoiding mistakes. It’s also about more than just following some silly list of tasks; it’s using that list to make sure that everyone is on the same page and knows what to do.
Checklists are also about making people feel like they’re part of something important. If someone feels like no one cares enough to take the time to understand what they do, then chances are it won’t get done properly or at all. Sometimes simple things can make the biggest difference in achieving your goals. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to start making your own checklist today!