90% Don’t Get What ManagePro is About… Do You?
We buy various productivity tools, including ManagePro, with all sorts of expectations, but if everyone just understood better how it relates to their garage or vacuum cleaner, we would all get more of what we are expecting. You are probably wondering… “What is he talking about now?” I’ll explain in a moment, but first let me ask you a question:
> “What makes garages stay clean and easy to use? Or if you don’t like that one,
> “What’s the critical element to getting the most of out of vacuum cleaners?”
Think about organized garages for a moment. Even if you don’t have one, you’ve probably seen one. How much does a) the process of getting them organized initially versus b) the process of putting things away consistently, have to do with maintaining that organized state? Is it a 10% – 90% ratio, maybe 5% – 95%? What do you think? I think it’s mostly about (b) putting stuff away.
Ok, take a look at vacuum cleaners. Are they effective because people read the manual and learn how to turn them on, and adjust the floor sweep setting, or are they effective because people use them regularly? Well both are correct of course, but what’s the relative ratio?
Learning is less than 5% of any vacuum cleaner I’ve had, except for an old Kirby I had 50 years ago, that seemed to promise to do everything from vacuuming any floor better, to shining my shoes and rotating a roasting chicken. Bottom line, it’s mostly about using it.
So here’s the deal with “getting it”, when it comes to signing up for any project management or business management tool like ManagePro.
You have to use them.
You have to update it with priorities and status updates each day, otherwise the platform get’s old and stale, or becomes a disorganized mess like any garage when stuff is piled up and doesn’t get put away. Not that we’re talking about your garage or mine. ;0
So you have to use it. Updates are priceless, actually the life-blood of something like ManagePro. Ok that’s one concept that some people miss. People who thought they could just set it up and it would do some magic automatically, or just put a project plan together and we’re done, it’s for someone else to manage. Hope that isn’t you, but keep reading there’s something bigger I want to share with you.
Tools like ManagePro are designed to change the way people work.
Read that again. 90%, maybe 95% of the world doesn’t get what I just wrote.
I don’t want you to fall in that group.
Most people don’t get that there’s a need to change the way they work. Oh they know and tell us that they feel overwhelmed with too much information and too many projects to complete. And they are correct, but they usually don’t see that their work process is too slow, too disconnected, and that they are engaged in a slow creep towards being non-competitive. E.g. so they don’t see the need or the benefit in changing how they work. It all looks like more effort than it’s worth, and they get busy figuring out why change is a bad idea, or it’s not the right tool, or some other direction. Sound familiar, perhaps wearily so?
When people are “not getting it” we commonly hear two phrases when they are looking at ManagePro:
1. This isn’t hard to learn is it?
Which translates into I don’t want to invest much time in this – I’m too busy working my old, “often overwhelmed” style,
2. “How much time is this going to take me each day?”
Again when people say how long is this going to take, they are signaling you they don’t intend to use it, and if they do it better require a minimum of their time… again because they plan on continuing to work the “old way.”
You see, tools like ManagePro, are pushing your work force to work in a more visible, accountable manner. To have priorities and what creates value, even your strategy, much more out front and tied into what you do each day.
To accomplish that, ManagePro uses various processes to change the way people work, everything from making projects, who’s doing what and the relative value more visible; to tracking priorities, and especially the discipline of posting regular status updates on everything from projects to to-dos that have been assigned to you. Again the idea is to keep everything much more visible and accountable and everyone on the same page. That’s what creates a different way, much more nimble, coordinated way to work.
Most of the world needs to work that way… but doesn’t. How’s it work at your office? It’s a challenge isn’t it, to get serious about working differently. Most of us seem to need a crisis bearing down on us before we acknowledge that fact. Hope that isn’t you and you get a lot of lift this year in your ability to reach your intended outcomes.
If you want better results, you have to change the way people work… and think. Use Einstein’s quote if that helps, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.“
Before I sign-off, welcome to the new year, my first blog of 2014, hope you are looking forward to a year with promise and new opportunities,