Time and job management (1)
As a project manager, you will feel that there is always no enough time to make project arrangement and the delivery date for project is often tight. Such feeling is more intense when it is in a multiple concurrent project environment. One thing is not finished; the other is coming and coming again, an avalanche of mail flocks to you. You will just hope the earth is in still and no more mails coming…
We dream we have a kind of perfect time management software that will help us to fix all scheduling agony and we can sit back and rest easy. However, dream is just a dream; it is not practical to rely on software. People have different habits, not to mention the hidden bugs of software.
In order to make smooth time and job management, let us get to know about Parkinson's Law first.
Parkinson's Law refers to the idea that work will always take as long as the time available for it. That is to say, it may take 5 days to translate 12,000wds, but if you give your translator 6 days to do it, he will take 6 days. However, this notion is commonly misconstrued to mean you can get more out of people if you squeeze them and give them impossible deadlines to meet. Sure, this mentality can do some help when there are very urgent task with tight (impossible) deadline. But in the long run, it is not good for us. Externally, the quality about project may be affected and it is easy to cause unsuccessful project (there is a must to discuss with clients and struggle for reasonable deadline, this is about another aspect about project management, client education); internally, your staff will surly unsatisfied with such chronically high pressure and result in despondency in staff and increased turn-over finally.
So we need to fix reasonable, achievable workload. For translator, the daily output is set as 2000-2500wds, for editor, it is 5000wds per day (8 hours). For some projects with tight deadline, we can:
1 arrange staff work overtime during weekend;
2 split the task and assign several translators + one editor;
3 recruit more hand;
4 make batch delivery.
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