ToC, Less Doing, and Retro game influenced management…

Whether we admit to it or not, we are alwasy working on a lot of different projects. Each project is multiplied in complexity by the number of people required for input and for completion. It gets to be a mess pretty quick.

We are no different. We have a lot of clients and projects that all require different results and timing and needs. I’d love to just be able to do everything for everyone, but that’s simply not scalable.

Seeing this is the case we’ve adopted a bit of a brick breaker mentality, let me explain. Ari Meisel, inventor of Less Doing, now Leverage told me this idea in reference to managing your email inbox.

Do you remember the game brick breaker?

The whole premise of the game is to get every brick eliminated without letting your ball go past the horizontal level of your paddle. It’s pretty fun and addicting once you start playing.

Of course, the simple strategy is to get the ball to do all the work in a way that you don’t have to worry about it hitting your paddle again. And if you keep it low without a good plan it comes back to you many times to touch and make sure the ball doesn’t get dropped.

Now, it’s pretty simple to relate this to email inbox management or project management. The idea is, “What can I do to get my portion done and have it clearly defined in the hands of another who is responsible for the next piece?”

It all comes down to planning the details of the project and assigning clear definitions of what things are which people’s responsibilities and following up to account one from another what has happened and what is still outstanding.

Your goal should be to get everything needed from you as quickly as possible so the next person can do their thing. If they can be done simultaneously even better.

In many cases there are lots of things we need, or things that need to be created, and unless they are clearly defined as to what needs to be created and who is responsible for its’ completion, it comes back on our plate to a waiting game and responsibility to get it done or delegate.

We are not perfect at this idea yet, but are working on making systems to make it far easier to start later and finish early.

Happy brick breaking and successful project managing!



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