Management

Identify the 'Quick Win' Opportunities in Your To-Do List

24 Oct, 2012 By: Robert Green

Are you facing a mountain of CAD management duties? Start with the tasks that yield big rewards, but require only a limited time investment.


I’m frequently approached by overwhelmed CAD managers who have way too much on their plates (sound familiar?). They often say, "There’s so much I need to get done, but I don’t know where to start!" In response, I always advise them to "Go for the quick win."

What I mean by a "quick win" is something that you can get done quickly, with minimal help from others, that solves a known problem. By starting with these tasks you’ll tackle known issues without getting bogged down in meetings, and you'll generate positive results in a relatively short amount of time. See if these examples would be good places to start in your company:

Clean out server directories. You know all those old files, junk folders, duplicated plot styles, random music files, non-standard project directories, and all the other garbage on your servers? Back it all up, then delete the garbage and wait for the objections to roll in. This recovers network space, declutters the CAD work environment, and puts everyone on notice that you’re serious about enforcing filing standards.

Fix up plotting standards. Revise procedures documents, standardize files, and consolidate all of it into your freshly cleaned CAD server. Don’t forget to lock the files down with permissions so they won’t get messed up again!

Update standard blocks, shared content, families, and project documents. Any type of standard part, symbol, detail, component, or other reusable content should be checked for relevance. Then it can be fixed (if required), deleted (if no longer needed), or simply kept (if correct). Now your users will be using the right ingredients when they start new projects.

I've found all these projects, which usually have been languishing on the back burner, to be excellent quick wins. When you tackle these problems the entire environment becomes cleaner, more structured, and more standardized, and you make it clear that you’re serious about getting solid work methods in place. In my experience, the culture of standardization you start to build with these quick wins can lead to bigger and better things, because everyone knows you get things done!

Even though the idea seems simple, it is powerful. Try it and tell me how it works for you.


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CAD Manager’s Newsletter? Send it to me at rgreen@cad-manager.com. If I use your tip in the newsletter you’ll receive a cool Cadalyst prize!


About the Author: Robert Green

Robert Green

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