Organization is key to success. Anyone who disagrees is either a miscreant or an artist.
If you are going to truly succeed you need to be able to both organize the physical space around you and what’s going on in the space inside of your head. If you are anything like me, a diet of nitro cold brew and Whole Foods prepared food has poised you for fantastic health (and bowl movements) however you are pretty gosh darn anxious ninety-five percent of the time. Your brain often might sound like several hundred-people shouting at one another while whatever catchy – and very annoying – Meghan Trainer song you heard on the way to work in the morning blares in the background. And you don’t even like Meghan Trainer, but damn can that girl write a catchy chorus.
If you want to be able to ease through your work day with maximum productivity, I suggest using the waterfall model. The waterfall model is a way of organizing a project from the moment of mental conception to the maintenance after deployment.
There are six steps usually organized in a waterfall looking diagram – hence the name. Here’s a breakdown of the steps:
• Requirements: What does your software do? What does it need in terms of design and functionality?
• System design: Now that you know what the requirements must be, draw a blueprint of the system to facilitate implementation
• Design Implementation: Now that you have a verified blueprint of the design the work begins.
• Verification and test: You need to make sure this system works right? So test it out. Run it through the ringer, mark down what doesn’t work and what does work and note what changes need to be made.
• System Deployment: Now that your system is created, and tested, launch it into the world after adequate preparation for reception by the public.
• Software maintenance: Do not neglect your brain child. Make sure there is regular updating and debugging of your system to keep it functioning and up to date.
When you are working on a long-term project these steps are necessary for success. Plus, if you have a very noisy, caffeine fueled brain like myself, it will help you translate your ideas into the physical world to better organize them.
Additionally, this will allow your entire team (even if is a tiny team or consists only of you) to stay on track. Long-term projects usually feel entirely overwhelming. This breaks down the conception, development, troubleshooting, launch, and after care of a system into steps as to not overwhelm the workers.
It also allows for tiny victories. This will keep the moral of your team up (even if the team is small or just yourself, you will enjoy these victories and they will help you continue on). Once you complete a stage celebrate! These long projects and system development is no small feat. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. While you think your will power is enough to get you through you will be thankful to take moments to cheer each other on, thus increasing productivity and moral at once.
Learn more about the waterfall model from the video below!