5 Project Planning Steps & Tasks

Oct 11, 2022

Project planning is the process of defining a project’s goals, objectives, risks, deliverables, costs, and schedule. It is the first step to selling a service or product, a webinar, a coaching program, a course, or client packages.

As you can see, project planning is a vital part of your processes to ensure you are delivering the right product and achieving the results you desire. Without a well-defined plan, it would be very difficult to manage a project or know if it was truly successfully 

Now that you know the importance of project planning, let’s discuss the different steps involved in the process. 

1: Define Project Goals

Creating specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals will help ensure that your project is designed to achieve its objectives and aligned with the overall strategy of your organization. 

Remember, however, that goals should also be achievable. Make sure your goals are something that you or your team can reasonably accomplish given the resources and time you have available.

Some examples of project goals are:

  • Develop a new product or service
  • Increase sales of existing product or service
  • Enter a new market
  • Increase market share
  • Improve customer satisfaction
  • Reduce costs


Benefits of having a project plan-project-plan-template


Here are the questions you need to ask for setting up your project goals:

  • What does the project need to achieve? 
  • Be realistic in what you can achieve in the time frame. 
  • Make the goals measurable so you can track progress.

2: Specify Time Frame

The next step in creating your project timeline is to determine the project’s start date and end date. You can do this by working backwards from the project’s deadlines. This will help you to identify any potential risks that could impact the project’s timeline. By identifying these risks ahead of time, you can develop contingency plans to help mitigate any potential delays. 

Here’s what you need to specify:

  • Start with the end date and work your way back to the present. 
  • Be sure to include time for editing, reviewing, and getting approvals. 

3: Identify Roadblocks

Good work so far! The third step is to identify any roadblocks that might impact the project. This is a key step because by taking the time to identify potential roadblocks, you can develop strategies to avoid or overcome them. 

top productivity roadblocks for project management

Major Roadblocks — Ganttic 

There are a few different ways to identify roadblocks. One is to simply brainstorm a list of potential problems that could occur. Another is to look at previous projects and see what went wrong. You can also talk to experts in the field and get their input. Once you have a list of potential roadblocks, the next step is to develop strategies to overcome them. This may involve changing the way you do things, or it may mean bringing in additional resources. 

Whatever the solution, the important thing is to have a plan in place so that you can keep your project on track. As you can see, identifying potential roadblocks is a vital part of the project planning process. By taking the time to do this, you can avoid unnecessary problems and keep your project on track.

Some questions to consider: 

  • Do you have all the resources you need? 
  • Do you have the necessary skills? 
  • Is there anything that could potentially delay the project?

4: Establish Budget

Creating a budget for your project is essential to its success. By taking a few key steps, you can ensure that your budget is accurate and will help you keep your project on track. 

  1. Define the scope of the project: This includes identifying all of the tasks that need to be completed in order to successfully complete the project.
  2. Estimate the cost of each task: This can be done by determining if it is an “only my time” task (give your time a dollar value), is outsourcing required, is special software required, and any other expenses that will be incurred.
  3. Add up all of the estimated costs: It helps to get the total budget for the project.
  4. Make sure to include a contingency fund: Make a budget to cover any unexpected costs that may come up.

Good budgeting is essential to the success of any project. Once you have determined how much you can afford to spend, it is important to stick to that budget as closely as possible. Unexpected costs can quickly derail a project, so it is important to have a contingency fund in place to cover those costs. If, despite your best efforts, the project ends up costing more than the budgeted amount, you may need to make cuts elsewhere in order to stay within your overall budget.

5: Project Management Software

Project management software can be a great asset when it comes to planning and executing a project. By keeping track of deadlines, tasks, and assigned team members, an online business can keep their projects on track and running smoothly.

There are a number of project management software options available to help with the planning process. 

Some popular choices include:

  • Asana
  • Trello
  • Basecamp
  • Wrike

Final Thoughts

One of the most important things you can do is to plan for success. By taking the time to answer important questions and identify potential roadblocks, you can set your business up for success. When planning you don’t have to go it alone. Hiring a team or even one person such as a project manager, may be something to consider as part of your overall plan.  And utilize necessary tools along the way to make planning and execution simple.



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