What does Mastering your workflow mean?
The term “workflow” refers to a process following a particular sequence through which a piece of work moves from start to finish. It describes the structured approach or pattern of activity that allows individuals or organisations to accomplish a task or set of tasks more efficiently.
When people talk about “mastering your workflow,” they’re generally referring to:
Understanding the Process:
This entails a clear grasp of every step or stage required to get from the start to finish a task. It’s about knowing what needs to happen first, what comes next, and so on.
Mastering your workflow often means looking for ways to make each step in the process more efficient. This can involve eliminating unnecessary steps, automating repetitive tasks, or streamlining communication.
A mastered workflow should be replicable. That is, if you were to go through the same workflow tomorrow, you’d expect similar results. This kind of consistency helps reduce errors and increases predictability and productivity.
While consistency is critical, a good workflow shouldn’t be inflexible. It should allow for adjustments based on specific organisational circumstances or new information.
Tools & Resources:
Part of mastering a workflow might involve using specific tools or software to help the process. This can help automate tasks, keep track of information, or facilitate regular, clear communication.
Review & Improvement:
Even after a workflow is established, it’s essential to review it periodically to ensure it remains efficient and relevant to the current needs.
When someone says they’re “mastering their workflow,” they’re working on optimising these components to be more productive and to ensure the best outcomes for their tasks or projects. It’s about gaining control, clarity, and efficiency in your work process.
That means managing all the parts that keep an organisation moving so you can build, grow and obtain the success you want, monetary, organisationally, and otherwise.
In short, a solid, workable workflow process should be able to help an organisation or business:
- Identify (repetitive) tasks — from the start through to completion.
- Define the business goals of the organisation.
- Select the right automation solution.
- Train the people using it.
- Measure key performance indicators (KPIs) and keep improving your workflow.
- Repeat, manage, and improve.
What are some of the best ways to manage workflows?
Setting up, managing, and staying consistent with a workflow can be challenging. Human error will often dictate that something slips through the net, and if you want to have an organised company or business that has its people at the centre, it’s crucial to have a system that helps to keep things moving, automated — as well as essential communication between individuals and teams.
Workflow (or project and organisation) management systems help businesses achieve their goals, organise time and manage the resources behind it. It can create and track reports and employee performance and ensure you better understand what’s working and what’s not. These workflow management systems can make team collaboration much easier and more seamless than ever.
It depends on your organisation and how many people work in an organisation — as well as your organisation’s vision, goals, and values — but here are some great tools that are the backbone of many companies.
These workflow tools also need to be:
- Easy to use with a learning curve that everyone can pick up.
- Good value for an organisation — dependent on numbers.
- Secure and data protected.
Some popular systems and processes include:
Microsoft Power Automate: https://powerautomate.microsoft.com/en-us/
All of these offer different variants depending on the kind of business or organisation and how many people there are in the business.
Mastering your workflow isn’t just about tools or technology but about people. Companies and individuals are better positioned by fostering clear communication and leveraging the right platforms.
Clarity in Goals:
Both at the team and individual level, have clear, defined objectives — starting from the top. Know what success looks like. Clear goals in an organisation need to work across multiple teams, and these need to align with external stakeholders and clients:
- Executive and leadership team
- Human resources (HR)
- Finance and Accounting
- Sales and marketing
- Production / Manufacturing (if relevant or applicable)
- IT and Security
- Research and development
- Customer Service and support
- Legal and Compliance
- Public Relations and Communications
- Procurement and supply ain (if relevant or applicable)
- Facilities and Administration
- Project management
- Training and development for all — including diversity and inclusion strategies
Business development strategy:
Business development is the process of gaining more clients and looking at different ways of growth for a business or organisation. By examining its successes and failures, business development is the product of business leaders and their teams (if relevant) identifying areas for improvement and growth. It could be defined as ideas, initiatives, and actions to improve a business.
Whether it’s a daily huddle or weekly review, regular check-ins ensure alignment across teams and address concerns promptly. Get teams involved in strategies away days and include them in developing an organisation and shaping how things are done.
Open Feedback Channels:
Cultivate an environment where feedback is encouraged from superiors and peers. As mentioned above, being available always encourages people to have their say and be part of things.
Use integrated communication tools (like the software tools mentioned above) to avoid information silos. But be clear about its functionality and training for users. Having all singing and dancing systems in place is possible if they work for the business and its people.
Training & Onboarding:
Ensure every team member understands the tools and protocols. This is especially important in HR and recruitment to match candidates with the right roles. And within HR and onboarding, have a sound application tracking system (ATS).
Clear documentation ensures everyone is on the same page, especially in recruitment, training, and development.
The foundations are successful by bringing suitable systems and processes — alongside a solid team structure and workflow. Keeping the cogs moving and evolving as an organisation grows will make sure that success will bloom.