Ok, so you’ve got your next project coming up and it’s time for planning. If you’re like us, you are probably well fed up with the boredom of planning stuff in classic to-do lists and you crave for something visually more appealing and motivating.
Welcome to the wonderful world of Gantt charts. This method of planning appeared sometime in the early 20th century and have ever since been a fondly used project planning toll. The prime reason being their simplicity and a great visualization of the activities. Gantt charts are an awesome way to plan out the project in a timeline manner, allowing you to define roles, responsibilities and effective use of your resources. This all adds to a better team cohesion, communication, and understanding.
When you want to give yourself a piece of mind, instead of being bombarded with a constant series of unnecessary questions from both your client’s side or your team, there’s just nothing that can beat project planning using Gantt. It will give you a vision of how your project develops and it will act as a guiding star all the way through to the end of your project.
Although there are people that don’t believe Gantt charts bring any benefits to project management and are only a matter of preference, here at Toggl Plan, we’re experiencing a great deal of them and we’d like to share it, here with you.
Improved Communication And Team Cohesion
We all have some bad memories from our past project experiences. One of them has to be all that precious time you had to spend explaining stuff to confused team members.
Gantt charts aren’t just a tool for planning your project. Your team can use Gantt charts to remind themselves of where they are in the project, what they need to complete certain tasks and which inputs they need to make it happen.
Gantt shows them exactly who they need to contact and work with. This makes them communicate better among themselves and with you as a team leader. You can now spend valuable time addressing more important stuff.
Cannot stress enough how important this one is. In the end, you’ll keep your energy and focus it on tasks of higher importance.
Clarity Of Why
This is probably our favorite one, Gantt charts are great morale boosters. We all hate those days when we feel like we’re lost in our projects and can’t see where the things are and where are they heading. Well, Gantt charts allow you to look at your project from another perspective. And not just another, it’s all about visualization and you have a quick overview of everything you need, from any angle at the click of your mouse.
As you look at your Gantt, you instantly see how things are unfolding and how every process leads to your projects completion. This is an awesome way to boost everybody’s morale without uttering a single word. You just can’t wait to get on the next activity that’ll bring you closer to your goals. This is why people like to use Gantts in their personal affairs as well. We definitely encourage you to give it a try on your next home project and see how it goes.
Moreover, it isn’t only about you as a team leader. This way of planning allows you to set responsibilities and roles for each of your team members. They too can have instantaneous morale boosts, since they have a greater feeling of purpose and a better overview of why they are a crucial part of the project and how others depend on them and vice versa.
Use Your Resources Effectively
Gantt charts simply allow for a smart and effective use of your resources. There are just so many difficulties occurring when your resources have to get stretched over too many processes. We don’t have to tell you about that. All the conflicts and problems that follow can bring to a definite stop of the whole project. Using Gantt charts as your project planning tool allows you to have the overview of the project’s timeline so you can easily see where and when a certain resource is used. It’s all about visualizing and planning accordingly.
This way you can allocate your resources in a manner that won’t make any unpredictable slowing down of the tasks. Once a process is finished you can transfer your scarce resource to another task without bashing your head with constant shifting between the tasks. Your projects will be delivered on time and you’ll be amazed at how much you can achieve with what you have in the given time-frame. Talkin’ about effectiveness here. This is what we call having a peace of mind.
All in all, the biggest advantage with the Gantt charts is the sheer simplicity and clear overview of the activities and their duration. This makes them ideal for projects where you need an ease-of-access to all relevant information that is easily understandable to all who are connected to it. Mind the biggest party here- your client.
Andrei is a Growth Hacker on Teamweek's marketing team. He is the person behind most of Teamweek's SEO-driven projects, including the budget calculator and the worst productivity tips generator. He enjoys writing about project management, graphic design, and anything tech.