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Solopreneur Project Management Skills (FS078)

When you’re working on a big project by yourself, you’ve got to have a system to keep your sanity.

Most of the big projects we work on — starting a blog, creating a product, publishing a series of podcast episodes, etc — have tons of moving pieces and there’s no one but ourselves to manage things.

And it’s so easy to start leaking sanity as things start slipping through your fingers.

So what we need is a system to help us manage these projects, and that’s exactly what today’s episode is about.

So click play and let’s get into the things we’ve learned (and we all need to understand) about mini projects, sprints, course management, measuring success and the best way to set goals. Enjoy!

Listen to the episode:

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“Several project management skills solopreneurs NEED to understand.”


Some Important Parts

  • How do you stay sane, keep your whits about you when all around is chaos and insanity and things slipping through your fingers?
  • What systems could she use to get a better handle on things?
  • 28: setting a hard deadline, vs vaguely working towards a goal.
  • 31: our “sprints” and “themes”, how we manage large projects over time. Switching contexts, focusing and actually getting shit done.
  • 37: “Course management,” also known as “chase’s surprisingly prescient golf rant.”
  • When you set out to create a project…
      1. What are the mini-projects that make up this project? Take inventory of what the essential ongoing work is so that when it’s done it has the impact you intend for it to have.
      1. Decide how you measure the success of that thing. Rate based goals are much more effective than one large goal at the end of the project. I.e., it’s better to measure DAILY than MONTHLY because you can have more control over the smaller and more immediate units of measurement.
  • So, how are you going to measure the success of that project?
  • 43: How to write down your desired outcome on these projects.
  • When something sits on your task list for a long time, it’s probably due to ambiguity of the item itself.
  • 45: the ViNO method of writing tasks.
  • 48: CEO vs worker bee modes.
  • 51: Seth Godin and defining the critical path.
  • 54: Waterfall vs agile and how this could be the most important bit in your project management.
  • 60: Tools and apps to use.

Ask Your Question

Ask your question and we’ll answer it on the air. We’d love to hear your voice on the show.


Show Notes

Darius Kazemi, Tiny Subversions – XOXO Festival (2014) – YouTube “Most people are lucky if they finish a couple side projects in a year. Last year, Darius Kazemi released 72, averaging one every five days.”

YouTube’s HTML5 Opt-in “You can request that the HTML5 player be used if your browser doesn’t use it by default.”

Portland Doughnuts, Standing Out & Dealing with Tragedy with Chase Reeves “If you’re looking for some energy boost, listening to this episode should do it for you!”

Digital Photo Mentor – Learn Photography | Take Pictures Darlene asked us the question today. Here’s her photography site.

Vanity vs. Actionable Metrics: Are you tracking the right stats in your business? “What metrics and stats should you actually be tracking and which don’t mean jack squat?”

CEO vs. Worker Bee: The Two Modes of Productivity “The distinction between these two modes, dubbed CEO and Worker Bee by our very own Chase Reeves, is an important mental barrier to create, especially for a solo bootstrapping founder.”

Critical path method – Wikipedia “The essential technique for using CPM is to construct a model of the project that includes the following…”

You Made It Weird #210: Josh Ruben « Nerdist THE. BEST. EVER. I’ve never laughed this hard or this long at a podcast episode.

Asana – task and collaboration app “Asana puts conversations & tasks together, so you can get more done with less effort.”


Your Take?

If you had to choose, what’s one project management tip you love? Let us know in the comments. See if we can collect a bit of a list here.


The Top 10 Mistakes in Online Business

Every week we talk with entrepreneurs. We talk about what’s working and what isn’t. We talk about successes and failures. We spend time with complete newbies, seasoned veterans, and everything in between.

One topic that comes up over and over again with both groups is mistakes made in starting businesses. Newbies love to learn about mistakes so they can avoid them. Veterans love to talk about what they wish they had known when starting out.

These conversations have been fascinating, so we compiled a list of the 10 mistakes we hear most often into a nifty lil' guide.

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