How do you deal with changing priorities

Four Asana tips for coordinating strict schedules and changing priorities

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You are probably familiar with these projects - priorities are constantly changing and the time budget is tight. You keep asking yourself: Have I done XY? Where did I put this note? When should this task be finished?

Nobody likes to work under tight deadlines and with changing priorities, but with Asana you can handle those challenges and not have to worry about tasks being missed. By keeping all of your work in one place, you and your team can easily track, execute, and report on tasks.

No matter how stressful it is or how many changes you are facing: With these tips, your team will always stay up to date.

1. Clarify which tasks need to be completed and when

Every good task in Asana has answers to the question: Who does what by when? This means that every task has a responsible person (“who”), a self-explanatory title (“what”) and a due date (“by when”). Especially with tight schedules, it is essential to have all the information at hand that you need to complete a task.

But sometimes you need more information beyond the due date. Depending on how time sensitive your work is, you may want to set a specific time as the deadline. Or plan a work process for several days. You can add even more clarity by assigning due times and start dates to your tasks. And that's especially important with strict schedules.

put a Time in Asana to make it clear when exactly a task needs to be done. For sales employees it is enough For example, not knowing that you are on the phone with a prospect “today” - you need to know what time that call is coming.

Some work processes take more than a day. For such, you can use a Start date set to indicate how much time is required for the completion. Let's think of a marketing team that is currently working on a new website. There is a specific date for the website to be published, this is the due date. There are likely to be subtasks for reviewing images, content, and bug fixes as well. In addition to the due date (i.e. when all tasks must be completed), also set a start date for the higher-level task so that everyone involved knows when work on this project will begin.

💡Tip: Use subtasks to break complex work processes into smaller steps. In this way you can record every single work step.

2. Recognize dependencies at a glance

It is particularly stressful when there are tasks that depend on other work processes when deadlines are tight. You cannot start your task until the other is done, but it is important to know when it will be!

In Asana, you can save a task as a dependent flag from another task. Thanks to the dependency function, you will receive a notification in your Asana inbox as soon as the first task has been completed. Dependencies are also useful if many priorities or due dates change in your project. If the due date of the original task is changed or delayed, you will also receive an inbox notification and plan your work accordingly.

💡Tip: Use the timeline view to visually show dependencies between tasks.

3. Report on your progress or ask colleagues for an update

With regular status updates, you can easily keep your team in the loop, focus them on the right priorities, and keep track of progress toward your goals when you're working to tight deadlines.

In Asana, you can choose a Status update to share with everyone involved in a project. With our new status creation tool, you can insert an overview-like summary and inform whether your project according to plan or unplanned runs or endangered is. You can also use this tool to easily add a snapshot of recently completed tasks and milestones achieved by your team, or list overdue tasks that now require special effort.

💡Tip: Are you wondering how things are going with a project that you are following? Request a status update via the progress tab.

4. Highlight the top priorities

Every project has key checkpoints or cues that show how the work is going, what progress you've made, and what major milestones are next. These are your project milestones - the easiest way to clearly communicate to your team whether your project is on track or not.

Create milestones in Asana to track your progress. Think of milestones like stages in a race - milestones don't capture the work that is being done, they represent important steps you will achieve in a project. If you work with tight deadlines and changing priorities, milestones show your team when important steps have been completed, updated, and changed in any way.

💡Tip: Use the timeline view to visually display milestones on your project timeline.

Stay up to date with Asana

Tight deadlines and changing priorities can definitely be onerous, but there are ways to deal with them. With Asana, you can help your team perform at their best, no matter the schedule or scope of your project. Provide clarity and support your team in all work processes.

Check out our best practices for even more Asana tips.