Are you staring down a humongous project or task? It can feel overwhelming, and the more you look at it, the more stressed you may feel. That’s where task decomposition comes into play. Rather than trying to tackle the complexities of a vast project all at once, break it down into smaller pieces.

According to a post from the ActiveCollab team, this can help you improve efficiency, reduce stress and ultimately lead to the successful completion of your project. In this issue of PromoPro Daily, we highlight the ActiveCollab advice that explains how to break down big projects into bite-size pieces.

Understand the task. What are you working toward? What’s the desired outcome or goal? What are the requirements? The post recommends reviewing all the information about the task or project and clarifying any uncertainties.

Break it down. Once you understand the task, the post advises dividing it into smaller, manageable parts. Each part should be a self-contained unit that contributes to the overall goal.

Sequence the tasks. Do you need to complete any tasks before starting this new undertaking? This can help you sequence your tasks appropriately. Some tasks can be done concurrently, while others naturally precede other tasks.

Estimate the time. This step can help you plan your schedule effectively. When projecting the time you’ll need, use your past experience with similar projects and consider the complexity of each task. Some tasks will naturally take longer to complete, the post says. 

Prioritize. When breaking down complex projects, think about which tasks are the most critical. They’re not all equally important. The post suggests prioritizing tasks based on importance, deadlines and dependencies. 

Work in some breaks. To prevent burnout and maintain high productivity levels, build in time for short breaks between tasks.

Track your progress. It can give you and your team a surge in motivation when you complete various tasks. Keep up with your progress and take a minute to celebrate achievements, the post advises.

Review and adjust. Even with proper planning, things may not always go the way you intended. The post says it’s OK to adjust your plan based on priority changes, unexpected obstacles or tasks taking longer than anticipated. The plan is dynamic and should serve your needs.

Chipping away at a major task little by little can make a big difference. Instead of trying to knock it all out at one time, practice the art of the task breakdown. Know where you want to start and create a clear path forward. Then, focus on one thing at a time. You’ll likely find that what was once a cumbersome, overwhelming task is now much more understandable and manageable.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: The ActiveCollab team. ActiveCollab is a project management software that lets teams plan and organize their work from start to finish.