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Workflow Management

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How to build a project management workflow (+ 3 templates)
Project Management 10 min read

How to build a project management workflow (+ 3 templates)

In this post, we’ll give you a step-by-step guide to planning, implementing, and assessing effective project management workflows.

How to Create an Efficient Workload Management Process
Project Management 10 min read

How to Create an Efficient Workload Management Process

Efficient workload management helps maximize team productivity and reduce the risk of overwork or burnout. Learn more about workload management tools with Wrike.

How to Create Your Team Charter (and Why You Should)
Leadership 10 min read

How to Create Your Team Charter (and Why You Should)

Have you ever experienced conflict on a team? Friction and disagreements happen pretty frequently and, in most cases, they all tie back to the same thing: misunderstandings and miscommunications. Somebody didn't realize something was their responsibility. Somebody didn't understand the norms of the group. Somebody did something out of turn and messed up the workflow. Wouldn't it be nice if you and your team had one single source of truth you could use to align your expectations? That's exactly what a team charter is. A team charter is a document that spells out the nuts and bolts of your team — whether it's a formal department or a team that was assembled for a specific project.  Some project charters are short and simple, acting almost as a straightforward directory of the team members. Others are more complex and dig deep into the team's core values, norms, processes, and other elements that help the team work together effectively.  Regardless of whether it's one page or 10 pages, a team charter serves the same purpose: It's essentially the roadmap for a team, bringing them back to the most important details of who they are and how they function — which can easily get lost in the hustle and bustle of the actual work.   What is the purpose of a team charter for project management? Many people create team charters for their departments or work teams — and there's a lot of value in doing so. Having a team charter for your department: Clearly outlines roles, responsibilities, and other important information Rallies the team around a shared goal or purpose Reduces confusion and miscommunications Improves onboarding of any new team members All of those are true when you use a team charter for a specific project team too. However, a charter for a project team could arguably be even more important Particularly for cross-functional projects that involve pulling team members from disparate departments, the team charter is what gives them a shared understanding of how they'll work together. When all of their departments typically have their own norms, expectations, and approaches, the team charter unites them with a shared understanding right from the get-go.  Additionally, a team charter used in project management will likely spell out more details related to the actual project (and not just the team makeup), such as the budget and resources, workflows, and success metrics.  To put it simply, the point of a team charter in project management is to ensure all relevant team members understand what they need to do in order to achieve the ultimate goal: delivering a successful final project.  What are the benefits of creating a team charter? The above section already gave a bit of a sneak peek at some of the key benefits of a team charter. But let's dig into each of those advantages of a team charter.  Clearly outline roles and responsibilities You might think that a job title is enough clarity, but that's usually not true — especially on project teams where people aren't as familiar with the strengths and expertise of the people they're working with. Who's the best person to approach to get the data they need? Who should they talk to if they need feedback?  A team charter explicitly outlines every single member on the team, their role or title, and what their responsibilities are. That ensures everybody understands their own expectations and contributions, as well as what everybody else around them is doing. That gives them a more holistic understanding of the team and how they fit in — which is especially important when so many teams are now remote or hybrid.  Rally the team around a shared goal or purpose Teams need to have their sights set on the same horizon and that's another key benefit of a team charter. It spells out the team's objective so there's no debate about what everybody is working toward. If you're creating a team charter for a department or long-standing team (for example, a customer support team), the objective you put on your team charter might look something like this:  Deliver prompt, helpful, and unmatched service and support to our customers. If you're creating a charter for a team that was assembled for a one-time project, then your objective will likely go beyond explaining the purpose of the team itself and also encompass the goal of completing the project. Here's an example:  Redesign our customer knowledge base to make it a comprehensive and intuitive destination for troubleshooting and self-service.  Either way, the team charter sets the north star for your team — everybody understands exactly what they're working toward.  Reduce confusion and miscommunications When you explicitly state what you're working toward and how each team member plays a part in getting there, confusion (and as a result, the potential for crossed wires) is already greatly reduced. But your team charter can take clarity even further by spelling out norms and expectations, outlining workflows, hashing out budgets and resources, and more.  Put simply, everything that makes your team and project tick is right there on paper. Everybody is operating with the same information and understanding from the outset — reducing miscommunications, frustration, and resentment down the line.  Improve the onboarding of any new team members Maybe your team has made a new (or a couple of new) hires. Or perhaps you need to bring in another contributor or even a freelancer to help with the project you're working on.  When you bring them onboard, you can send them your team charter. It'll serve almost as a user manual that helps them quickly get up to speed on who does what and how your team generally operates.  Oh, and when you bring on somebody new? Don't forget to add them to your team charter too.  How to create a team charter: Eight steps to follow You're sold on the benefits of a team charter and you're ready to create one for your own team. Here are eight steps to follow to pull it together. 1. Cover the basics The top of your team charter is the easiest part. It's where you'll write down basic information like: Your team's name (if you have one) Your team's leader The date your charter was created The date your charter was last updated Those are important details for people to know up front. Plus, including the dates helps with version control of your document when your charter inevitably needs to change.  2. Define your team's purpose Here's the first question you need to ask yourself: Why does your team exist? Do you offer a distinct service? Fulfill a specific function? Are you completing a certain project?  This could be a simple statement — or it could be several bullet points or statements explaining your team's objective and how that feeds larger business goals. Regardless of how much detail you provide, this section of your team charter should give everybody a clear idea of the purpose behind your team.  EXAMPLE GOAL OR PURPOSE: We will design and create a new customer service knowledge base that will launch in Q2 of 2023.   3. State your core values Your goal is an important uniting force for your team. However, there are other expectations and shared beliefs that will dictate how you work together. Those are your core values. Listing them on your team charter helps everybody get a sense of what's important to your team. And, when they work to embody those values, collaboration is smoother — and conflicts are minimized.  EXAMPLE CORE VALUES: Be honest and accountable Empower and respect others Maintain a growth mindset Communicate proactively and transparently 4. Establish your roles and responsibilities  Your team is at the center of your team charter. Consider this section the "who's who" where you list out the different team members and their roles or titles.  This section that focuses on people can be as detailed as you'd like it to be. Some people leave it as a straightforward list while others dig into team members' responsibilities, strengths, weaknesses, availability, and other information about group members. EXAMPLE ROLES:  Safiya, Head of Customer Support/Team Leader  Timothy, Customer Support Specialist Beverly, Customer Support Specialist Joshua, Content Writer and Editor MaryBeth, Graphic Designer Jose, Web Developer 5. Determine your norms and expectations There are a ton of different norms, patterns, and behaviors that regulate how you and your team work together — whether they're spoken or not. Maybe everybody automatically knows to keep themselves on mute during Zoom meetings unless they're the one speaking. Or perhaps everybody understands that Slack is used for quick requests and personal chatter, while meatier information should go in an email or in Wrike. It's tempting to take those for granted as widely-accepted and inherent truths. But what about if somebody new joins the team? They should have insight into the various expectations, routines, and rituals. That's why it's worth spelling out your most important ones directly in your team charter.  EXAMPLE NORMS:  We practice active listening by summarizing what someone has shared with us We don't interrupt other people in meetings We post and share anything relevant to our projects in Wrike and not in siloed channels  6. Define your project workflow These next few sections of your team charter can vary, depending on whether you're creating a charter for your department or you're creating a charter for a team that was pulled together for a particular project. If you're creating a charter for your department or a longer-standing team, then you can use this section to spell out your typical workflow for new work.  If you're creating a charter for a specific project, then this section can be more detailed and briefly outline some of the phases, deliverables, and timeline of your assigned project. Much like any other section of the charter, you have flexibility here to create something that works best for you.  EXAMPLE PROJECT WORKFLOW:  Receive a work request through our team's request form Team leader investigates and approves or denies the project Approved projects are discussed in a project kickoff meeting 7. Set your success metrics Again, this is another section that varies based on the context of your team charter. You might use this to establish the success metrics for your entire team or you might use it to lay out what success looks like for a specific project. Either way, try to be as specific as possible. The goal you set earlier in your team charter provides a lot of unity and clarity — but people also need to be on the same page about what success ultimately looks like. EXAMPLE SUCCESS METRICS:  Deliver 85% of our projects on time and under budget Receive at least a four out of five rating on our employee engagement scores 8. Explain your budget and resources When creating a charter for a project team, you can use this section to quickly highlight your finances and available resources. Don't feel the need to get too detailed here — a lot of the in-depth information will be included in your project plans. But a brief overview is helpful context for the entire team. When creating a charter for your department, it's tougher to get nitty-gritty about the actual budget or resources, as they can vary widely.  Instead, you can use this section to explain your typical approach to budgeting, how resources are allocated or approved, and other general information about how these processes typically work.  EXAMPLE BUDGET AND RESOURCES:  Annual budgets are approved each December Project budgets are approved as needed by the team leader Resource needs should be discussed during project planning and kickoff  When you've completed all of that, you have your first draft of your team charter ready to go. Review it yourself and share it with your team to see if anybody has any feedback or changes. Once it's finalized, keep it somewhere accessible so everybody can reference it when needed. And remember, this document is never actually finished. Teams change and your charter will too. Revisit it frequently to make any necessary updates as you complete projects, add team members, revise budgets, and refine your norms and expectations.  Three examples of team charters to inspire you Need a little more creative inspiration before you put pen to paper (or your fingers to the keyboard) on your own team charter? Here are three team charter examples to get your wheels turning.  Example #1: Human resources team charter Team Name: Human Resources Department Team Leader: Marie Charter Created: April 18, 2020 Charter Updated: November 2, 2022 Team Purpose:  Supporting and developing the full potential of our staff and entire organization Team Members:  Marie, VP of Human Resources Cole, Director of Human Resources Wes, Recruiting Manager Faith, Payroll Manager Dorothy, Benefits Specialist Noah, Human Resources Coordinator Core Values: Focus on people Demonstrate passion for work Maintain a growth mindset Team Norms:  No communication after hours, on weekends, or during PTO Cameras always on for Zoom meetings Project Workflow:  All requests flow through the VP of Human Resources Priorities are set during weekly team meetings Success Metrics:  Employee engagement scores of at least a 4.5 out of 5 stars Employee retention rate of at least 93% Average time to fill a posted position of three weeks Budget and Resources:  Team's annual operating budget: $725,000 Every team member gets a LinkedIn Premium or LinkedIn Recruiter plan Example #2: Agile team charter Team Name: Team Ticketing System Team Leader: Yusif Charter Created: January 8, 2022 Charter Updated: January 23, 2022 Team Purpose:  Launch a new customer support ticketing system within the app Team Members:  Yusif, VP of Development/Team Lead Courtney, VP of Customer Support/Product Owner Thai, Software Developer and Stakeholder Lucy, Software Developer and Stakeholder Noah, Customer Support Specialist and Stakeholder Core Values:  Remain adaptable and flexible Eagerly seek improvement Focus on the customer  Team Norms:  Acknowledge receipt of all messages Ask questions before jumping to conclusions No devices in daily Scrum meetings Project Workflow:  Default to Scrum with sprints of one to three weeks Daily Scrum meetings for the entire sprint Burndown charts will monitor daily work Success Metrics: Ticketing system is launched by May 2023 Ticketing system reduces live customer support calls by at least 20% Budget and Resources:  Sprint-to-sprint budget management Example #3: Blog redesign project team charter Team Name: Team Blog Redesign Team Leader: Michael Charter Created: November 15, 2022 Charter Updated: N/A Team Purpose:  Redesign the CompanyXYZ blog to improve usability and navigation Team Members:  Michael, Head of Marketing/Team Lead Savannah, Content Writer Kristin, Content Editor Marcy, Content Designer Oscar, Web Developer Mark, Graphic Designer Core Values:  Communicate honestly and respectfully Eagerly seek feedback Follow through on promises Team Norms:  Post all project-related resources and updates directly in Wrike Ask clarifying questions before providing constructive criticism Project Workflow: Project kickoff meeting to start the project Updates regularly posted in Wrike Weekly team meeting to discuss progress Success Metrics:  Blog redesign launched by April, 2023 Increase time-on-page by 40% Budget and Resources: Project budget is $15,000 Access to CompanyXYZ's freelance pool for help writing content and creating new graphics Manage your teams and projects with Wrike Solid teamwork doesn't automatically happen when you pull people together or assign a project. For people to work well together, they need clarity about their purpose, their roles, and their approach. That's why a team charter is so helpful. It's a single source of truth for everybody on the team to align their expectations and set themselves up for success. Want even more clarity? Manage your team and all of your projects in Wrike. With collaborative work management software, you can: Get visibility into everybody's work Clearly assign tasks, owners, and deadlines Centralize communication and resources Easily monitor progress and course correct when necessary Streamline and simplify your work intake process Save time with templates Ready to empower your team to do their best work? Create your team charter and use Wrike to store it and manage all of your day-to-day work — while honoring those rules and expectations. Get started with Wrike for free today. 

Teamwork Works: Benefits and Strategies for Maximizing Your Team's Collaboration
Leadership 10 min read

Teamwork Works: Benefits and Strategies for Maximizing Your Team's Collaboration

Chances are, you've worked as part of an incredible team at some point in your life. The team members trusted and respected each other, people met (or even exceeded) expectations, and you all generally enjoyed getting your work done together.  Unfortunately, you've also probably had the opposite experience: working on a team where teamwork was a struggle. Frustration ran rampant, resentment brewed, and it felt like you couldn't get anything done without a crisis or three-alarm emergency.  Those are two vastly different experiences, right? But what's the difference-maker between them?  What caused one team to move forward seemingly effortlessly, while the other repeatedly ran off the rails? There's no simple answer. Teamwork is common (you'll find it everywhere, from sports to workplaces), but it's also complex.  Understanding the ins and outs of teambuilding and how to improve teamwork requires some flexibility and commitment — but it's well worth the effort.  What does teamwork actually mean?  Let's start by getting a solid grasp of the definition of teamwork. Speaking quite literally, teamwork is a collaborative effort of a group of people working toward a shared goal. However, the term "teamwork" usually isn't used to describe any team that's working toward a common objective. More often than not, teamwork describes a team doing that in a positive and productive way. Essentially, "teamwork" means a group is working toward a shared finish line in a way that's effective, efficient, and respectful.  What are the benefits of good teamwork? It's a pretty widely-accepted fact that solid teamwork is important. But why does good teamwork matter in the workplace? When a team can collaborate well together, it leads to many advantages for individual employees, the whole team, and even the entire organization.  Here are a few of the most notable benefits of teamwork: Better productivity: Fewer crossed wires, fewer dropped balls, no missed deadlines. When your team is running like a well-oiled machine, it makes sense that they'll be able to get more done (with less stress, to boot). Less burnout: Speaking of less stress, solid teamwork can also reduce burnout. In one study that looked specifically at healthcare workers, teamwork was proven to reduce the emotional exhaustion of the team members. It makes sense — people can rely on more hands to carry the load, as well as trusted confidantes they can turn to when they need advice or encouragement. Higher employee happiness and satisfaction: Research has proven that our relationships and connections at work greatly impact our overall wellbeing and even our sense of purpose. In order for teams to work well together, team members need to trust and respect each other. Those positive bonds can improve happiness, satisfaction, and well-being. Improved employee retention: Less burnout? Happier employees? That all leads to better employee retention. When recent data from Pew Research Center found that 35% of employees who quit their jobs cited "feeling disrespected at work" as their major reason for quitting, fostering a team environment where people feel valued and supported can encourage people to stick around. Increased autonomy: When a team is working together cohesively, effectively, and efficiently, managers inherently have more trust. That means they're far more willing to step back and give the team more ownership over their work and decisions. More innovation and creativity: Have you heard the old saying that two (or many) brains are better than one? Research backs it up, proving that high-quality teamwork can improve creativity and innovation. So, working together can help your team develop their biggest, boldest, and most meaningful ideas.  In short, there really aren't any drawbacks or disadvantages to high-quality teamwork. This level of top-notch team collaboration leads to less frustration, more support, and, ultimately, the delivery of more winning projects.  What are the qualities of good teamwork? Those benefits are compelling, but simply having a team doesn't mean you'll reap the rewards. Teamwork is a skill — it's something that can be taught, learned, and practiced. So, what types of qualities does it take to be able to work well with other people?  Here are some of the most crucial skills and characteristics required for being a good team player:  Accountability: Taking responsibility for completing your tasks and meeting your expectations Collaboration: Being willing to work with others rather than completely independently Communication: Clearly sharing information with others, as well as actively listening to understand their point of view Emotional intelligence: Recognizing and managing your own emotions, as well as the emotions of other people on the team Flexibility: Being able to adjust your plans, consider different viewpoints, and roll with the punches Respect: Showing consideration for all other team members, whether you agree with them or not Time management: Successfully prioritizing your tasks and allocating your hours to ensure you're able to meet your assigned deadlines It's not an exhaustive list, and plenty of other soft skills and competencies — from problem-solving to decision-making — will also play an important role depending on your unique position, team, and industry.  But the above are some of the most basic building blocks of successful team-building.  Making teamwork work: Eight strategies for next-level teamwork Once you've confirmed that you and your team have the right skills for teamwork, what actionable steps can you take to improve how you work together? Remember that there's no quick fix — improving teamwork takes diligence and, perhaps even more importantly, patience.  As you commit to the process, here are eight impactful tactics that you and your team can put into practice together.  1. Provide clarity about shared goals The definition of teamwork itself says that people need to work toward a shared goal. In order to do so, they need to know what that goal is.  After all, your team won't get much accomplished if they all have their sights set on different finish lines. It’s up to you to set expectations and make sure your team knows how to reach them.  Whenever you and your team kick off a new quarter, project, or initiative, have a team meeting to discuss the goal you're working toward. Document it and store it somewhere that's easily accessible for everyone. Get as nitty gritty as you can with your goals. Using the SMART goal framework will help you set objectives that are: Specific Measurable Attainable Relevant Time-bound For example, if you and your marketing team are kicking off a new webinar series, your team's SMART goal might look like this: Create and host three webinars by the end of Q2 to advance our expertise and build trust with our customers.  That statement alone provides a lot of clarity. Now everybody on your team has insight into what you're doing, why you're doing it, and when it needs to be done by. But as you outline your team's common goals, it's important to take things a step further by: Connecting your team's goals to individual goals: People don't just need to understand the shared effort — they need to clearly see how their individual role and work play a part in that bigger objective. It boosts accountability and gives them a greater sense of purpose. Connecting your team's goals to company-wide goals: Your team members should also understand how your team's objectives feed the broader organizational goals. Will that webinar series help you build more authority in your industry? Draw that parallel so that team members have visibility into how their work is not only pushing your team forward, but the entire company.  Finally, it's also helpful to set some metrics that will help you and your team understand how you're progressing.  Objectives and key results (OKRs) are helpful indicators as you work toward bigger goals. Plus, they're easy to set and track in Wrike.  2. Understand team members' strengths and weaknesses Teamwork feels the most effortless when team members are able to handle tasks that play to their unique strengths — and skip the ones that are daunting and disheartening.  To do that, you need to have a solid understanding of what each of your team members brings to the table, as well as what areas they struggle in. You can do this through a more formal assessment. Here are some of the most common and popular ones that leaders use to get a deeper understanding of team members:  CliftonStrengths Assessment DiSC Assessment SDI 2.0   SWOT Analysis  Those types of assessments will help you dive deep. But you can also learn a lot by having some candid conversations — both with individual team members and your team as a whole. Questions to ask team members:  What type of work makes you feel excited and energized? What type of work drains or frustrates you? What's one previous project that you really enjoyed contributing to? What's one skill or area you would like to work on improving?  Questions to ask the entire team:  What do we do well as a team? Where do we struggle as a team? What's one past project we're really proud of? What's one past project we found particularly challenging? Are there any skills we think we're missing on our current team? Are there any processes or workflows that need to be improved? These types of conversations will help you spot skill gaps and other areas of improvement. They'll be especially helpful as you break up projects and assign out tasks (more on that in a minute).  In short, the more you can leverage strengths and address weaknesses, the better off you and your entire team will be.  3. Assign clear roles and responsibilities It's hard for your team to work well together if nobody knows what they're supposed to do. Work gets duplicated, tasks get skipped entirely, and people become increasingly frustrated by the lack of clarity.  On your team, there should be no doubt about who does what. On a broad level, a lot of that is implied based on their role. Your graphic designer is obviously the one that people will approach with design needs, while your SEO specialist is the go-to person for any keyword questions. But when it comes to specific projects, you need to get even clearer by breaking projects down into individual tasks and then clearly outlining not only who is handling certain tasks, but also when those tasks are due.  It can also be helpful to note any task dependencies so that people have visibility into how their individual piece connects to the entire project. Want to make this easier? Look for a work management platform or project management software (like Wrike!) that allows you to create tasks and then assign team members and due dates to them.  Whether you're managing remote teams, in-person teams, or hybrid teams, that level of transparency will ensure that everybody understands not only what they need to do, but what everybody else is doing too.  4. Prioritize knowledge sharing Effective knowledge management — which is a fancy term for effectively sharing information and resources with each other — is a major struggle for teams. In fact, Deloitte says it's one of the top three issues affecting company success. It can be challenging to keep everybody in the loop, especially as your team grows. But there are things you can do to boost transparency across your team including:  Hosting frequent team meetings where everybody can provide updates and hear about current happenings. This can be a daily check or weekly, depending on how quickly your team moves. Pairing up newer team members with more experienced team members Pulling everything — tasks, goals, status updates, documents, resources, and more — into a single work management platform like Wrike so everybody sees what's happening across the team, and teamwork online becomes easier Reducing competition so team members don't feel like they need to hoard information as currency Leading by example by openly sharing information yourself Your team will always struggle to work well together if they feel like they need to hide information and resources in order to get ahead or simply don't think to openly share with others. By prioritizing knowledge sharing, you give everybody the visibility they need to get their own work done — and support others in the process.  5. Refine processes and workflows Does your team do similar work and projects over and over again? There's no need to start from scratch each time.  Coming up with standardized processes and workflows removes the guesswork, improves consistency, and supports better teamwork.  Let's say that your team is responsible for creating the same report every single quarter. To simplify that process, you could: Understand what is and isn't working so you can make improvements Break down the steps involved and create a custom workflow that you can copy and use each time Create templates for necessary documents and resources When that report is on your team's plate next time, they'll feel extra confident in their ability to pick it up and get started because they have an existing framework to lean on. They aren't starting from square one.  This is especially helpful for a virtual team working from home. The shift to remote work has meant that many employees working from home may struggle with communicating processes to one another and getting caught up in silos. Ensure that your refined processes are communicated to all team members in real time, and remote employees are trained in how to engage in them.  6. Cultivate psychological safety Psychological safety means that team members feel secure enough to take risks, make mistakes, and be vulnerable with each other — without the fear of judgment or reprimands.  This level of comfort and support is crucial for high-performing teams, but figuring out how to cultivate it can be challenging. Here are a few ways to ensure your team has a high degree of psychological safety: Host brainstorming sessions where there's no such thing as a "bad idea" and team members are only there to generate ideas — not critique other ones Candidly talk about your own personal successes and mistakes to model that there's no shame in failure or missteps Encourage your team to remove personal language during collaborative discussions (for example, "that idea" instead of "your idea") Even seemingly small steps can make a big difference in the level of confidence team members have in voicing their opinions and sharing their big ideas.  7. Foster trust and social bonding You might guess that team members work better together when they know each other. Teamwork really gets kicked up a notch when they don't just know each other, but when they like each other — when they've found some common ground and interests.  That won't happen if they never have an opportunity to connect with each other outside of meetings and daily to-dos.  You don't want team bonding to feel like a burden or something that eats into the time they need to get their work done.  However, coming up with some different social interactions will help them forge deeper relationships with each other. Here are a few ideas you can use, whether your team is sharing an office or you're looking for some virtual team-building activities:  Save time at the beginning or end of your team meetings for icebreaker questions or personal catch ups Start dedicated Slack channels for people to connect on non-work-related topics, like sharing recipes or setting up book clubs Create a collaborative playlist where all team members can add their favorite music Host game nights, trivia contests, happy hours, coffee chats, or other informal opportunities (virtual or in-person) for team members to get to know each other socially Start a photo challenge for your team where they share photos in a different theme — from their pets or home office spaces to their yearbook photos or favorite vacations Set up a Zoom room that remote workers can pop into if they want to enjoy a beverage and a chat with a coworker There's no shortage of ways that you can encourage stronger connections between team members.  Make sure to regularly collect their feedback on these types of building exercises so that you can continue to offer things that they find enjoyable. You don't want these to feel like an obnoxious obligation.  8. Regularly solicit feedback You don't just need to gather your team's feedback on their social opportunities — you need to collect it about, well, everything.  As the leader, it's your job to keep your finger on the pulse of how things are going so that you can make changes and nip problems in the bud. Feedback shouldn't be something that happens once or twice a year during performance reviews or formalized surveys.  Hearing from your team members needs to be continuous and ongoing. Not sure how to regularly tap into how they're thinking and feeling? Here are a few ideas to gather valuable and helpful feedback:  Reserve a portion of your team meeting to talk about roadblocks, frustrations, and successes Host project retrospectives to discuss what went well and what needs to be improved next time Regularly use employee surveys (anonymous or not) to collect feedback Come prepared with feedback questions to ask employees during their one-on-ones Not only does this give you insight that you can use to take action, but it also shows your employees that you value their thoughts and opinions — which can go a long way in boosting their engagement.  How will you know if you're getting teamwork right?  How will you know if your efforts to improve teamwork are actually working?  Effective teamwork can be difficult to quantify — in many ways, it's one of those "you'll know it when you see it" types of things.  However, here are a few telltale signs that your team is meshing well together: Work is being completed on time and with fewer errors Team members seem enthusiastic, energized, and motivated Scores from employee surveys or feedback are improving Miscommunications are becoming less frequent Team members are stepping in to support and help each other Conflicts and disagreements are decreasing Those signs will help point you in the right direction, but rest assured that you'll also get a gut feeling when teamwork is improving. The whole morale and culture of your team will likely shift in a more positive direction.  How Wrike can help make teamwork work for you There's a lot that goes into effective teamwork. Fortunately, a collaborative work management platform like Wrike can help make teamwork less stressful and more successful.  Here's how Wrike can help you reap the rewards of teamwork (while steering around all of the potential pitfalls): Setting goals and OKRs to keep your team focused on their shared objective Assigning task owners, due dates, and dependencies so everybody understands their role Providing visibility into the whole picture so everybody sees how they fit in Centralizing communication so nobody has to dig through folders, email threads, or instant messages Improving knowledge sharing by keeping all of your team’s tasks, plans, calendars, updates, and resources in one place Increasing consistency with custom workflows Saving time with a huge variety of templates that you can copy and customize And that's only the start! Teamwork shouldn't be guesswork — and Wrike is the resource you need to keep your entire team on the same page.  Teamwork doesn't mean perfection So, what's the difference between a team that works together effortlessly and one that's ripe with chaos and confusion? As it turns out, quite a bit. Teamwork isn't simple. And even when you get it right, that doesn't mean that things will always be smooth sailing.  Conflict is inevitable in a team environment and it doesn't mean that something is wrong. In fact, it's an important and healthy part of teamwork, provided that you and your team are equipped to work through it in a respectful and productive way.  That becomes a lot easier when you already have the foundation of solid teamwork in place — and the above strategies can help you get there.  Put them into play on your team and stay committed as you all transform from frazzled and frustrated to streamlined and supportive.  Ready to take your teamwork to the next level? Get started with Wrike for free today. 

Best Workflow Software & Tools for Process Management (2022)
Project Management 10 min read

Best Workflow Software & Tools for Process Management (2022)

An effective workflow management system streamlines tasks and increases employee productivity. Read more about workflow management tools with Wrike.

How To Enhance Design Operations for Creative Teams
Productivity 7 min read

How To Enhance Design Operations for Creative Teams

Learn how Wrike’s DesignOps Manager cultivated the perfect creative production flow for our internal design team with request forms, reports, and more.

How to Set Up Your Waterfall Workflow
Project Management 5 min read

How to Set Up Your Waterfall Workflow

If you've ever just wanted a straightforward method to manage a project with few dependencies, then this is how you would set it up within Wrike — or any other project management tool.

The Ultimate Guide To Business Process Management (BPM) Software
Project Management 7 min read

The Ultimate Guide To Business Process Management (BPM) Software

Leverage the versatility and insights of business process management software. Identify inefficient or unreliable processes and harness the power of automation.

A Guide To Marketing Workflow Management (With Infographic)
Project Management 5 min read

A Guide To Marketing Workflow Management (With Infographic)

Efficient marketing workflow management can save your teams time, money, and hassle. Manage email marketing, seo, and content workflows with ease.

5 Reasons Creative Teams Should Adopt Systems Thinking
Project Management 7 min read

5 Reasons Creative Teams Should Adopt Systems Thinking

With an ongoing avalanche of information and data now available on a multitude of platforms, it’s easy to become more focused on tools than the creative side of work. It’s time to change your approach. Check out our list of 5 reasons why systems thinking can revolutionize the way you work.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Up Your Agile Workflow in Wrike
Wrike Tips 5 min read

The Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Up Your Agile Workflow in Wrike

Agile teams are more productive, more satisfied with how their teams manage work, and can deliver results faster. But just because Agile is flexible, doesn't mean it's a free-for-all. In order to embrace the adaptability and speed of Agile, you need the right processes and an organized framework. And you need a work management tool that will bring structure to your work, while allowing for the kind of customization needed to support your team's chosen Agile approach.  In this article, we'll show you how to set up a Scrum process in Wrike, create an Agile work breakdown structure, and determine what a project dashboard should contain. How to Create a Scrum Dashboard in Wrike  This approach requires the custom status feature, so you'll need either the Business or Enterprise subscription plan. If you're not already using Business or Enterprise, start a free trial. You’ll also need to have admin privileges to set up your Scrum workflow in Wrike.  1. Here's how to build the workflow:  Select “Account Management” under your account profile, then click the Workflow tab.  Click on “+ Create New Workflow” and give your new workflow a name.  Hover your mouse over each section and add statuses. Include statuses for Accepted, In Progress, Ready for Review, Changes Needed, Completed, On Hold, and Cancelled. (Your workflow may vary slightly, especially when it comes to your particular review and approval process.) Once you’re finished, click “Save.”  2. Once you have your Scrum workflow, you’ll need to set up your folders:   Create three new folders, and be sure they’re shared with your team: a Backlog folder, a Scrum folder, and an Archive folder. Incoming work will be funneled into your Backlog folder, accepted or active tasks will be moved into your Scrum folder, and completed tasks will be added to the Archive folder at the end of each Scrum period, or sprint.  3. Since the first step in Scrum is to organize and prioritize incoming work, you’ll need to create a Request Form for people to submit new tasks and projects to your team:    Go to your profile and select Account Management, then click the Request forms tab.  Create a new Request form and make sure to include all the fields you’ll need to complete the work: i.e. requirements, due dates, goals, urgency, and business value. It’s also a good idea to include a field for a link to the task where the work will be done. (Once in Scrum, the Request task will act as a placeholder — think of it like a sticky note you move across a whiteboard — it’s not where the actual work will be done.)  4. Create a Dashboard from your Scrum folder.  Create a new Dashboard and name it.  In folder view, click the Filter icon and select the first step of your custom Scrum workflow. Then click the three-dot menu and select Add to Dashboard.  Do this with each step of your custom workflow to complete your Scrum Dashboard.   Note: Remember that tasks must be included in the Scrum folder in order to appear on the Dashboard. Also note that dragging tasks between widgets will automatically update their status—except if you drag items back into Requests, since this is a different folder than the rest of your widgets. In this instance, you'll need to click into the task and update the status. At the end of each sprint, create a subfolder within your Archive folder to house the tasks you completed and easily generate reports based on each sprint.  Need More Help Setting Up Your Agile Workspace?  If you're looking for more instructions on how to customize your Wrike workspace, implement Kanban scheduling, create custom workflows, or set up project Dashboards, check out the Wrike Help Center. You’ll find a searchable knowledge base, tutorials, live webinars, and a community of fellow Wrike users. Browse the community forums to ask questions and find out how other people are using Wrike with Agile, or learn new tips and best practices. Want more personalized help? You can always contact Wrike Support at support (at) team.wrike.com. 

26 Sales Process Statistics & Best Practices
Productivity 5 min read

26 Sales Process Statistics & Best Practices

Did you know: Nearly 13% of all full-time U.S. jobs are sales positions? (That's 1 in 8 jobs!) [Source: SkilledUp via The Brevet Group] Over one trillion dollars ($1,000,000,000) are spent annually on sales forces. [Source: Salesforce Training via The Brevet Group] With all this money and energy going into sales, it's no surprise that there has been an equal amount of research going into improving sales processes. Managers of sales teams always have money in mind, and they want to make every salesperson on their team a lean, mean, money-making machine. We collected research from studies published online to help managers like you optimize your sales processes for more wins and better results. If you want business to boom, follow these four proven rules for sales teams: 1. Speed Matters: Early Bird Gets the Worm 35-50% of sales go to the vendor that responds first. [Source: Salesforce] When trying to contact a newly created lead... Call within the first 5 minutes. The odds of getting them on the phone drops 100x by the 30-minute mark. [Source: Lead Response Management] The odds of getting ahold of someone decrease more than 10x within the 1st hour. [Source: Lead Response Management] When trying to qualify a newly created lead... Following up with a web lead within 5 minutes of their sign up makes them 9x more likely to convert [Source: InsideSales.com via Jake Atwood] The odds of success if called in the first 5 minutes vs. the next 30 minutes drops 21x. [Source: Lead Response Management] The odds of success on the first call decreases more than 6x in the 1st hour. [Source: Lead Response Management] U.S. salespeople that reached out to leads within 1 hour are 7x more likely to qualify than those who wait 1 to 2 hours. [Source: Harvard Business Review] U.S. salespeople who reached out to leads within 1 hour are 60x more likely to qualify than those who wait 24+ hours. [Source: Harvard Business Review] 2. Follow-Up & Persistence A phone call followed by an email has proven to be the most effective sales process. [Source: Salesforce] When it comes to cold calls... Average number of cold calls it took to reach a prospect in 2007: 3-4 cold calls [Source: TeleNet and Ovation Sales Group via Jake Atwood] Average number of cold calls it takes to reach a prospect today: 8 cold calls [Source: TeleNet and Ovation Sales Group via Jake Atwood] When it comes to follow-ups... After the first meeting, 80% of sales require at least 5 follow-up calls to convert. [Source: The Marketing Donut via Jake Atwood] Despite that, 44% of salespeople give up after just 1 follow-up call. [Source: The Marketing Donut via Jake Atwood] Finding leads through networking... 72% of world-class sales teams use social media to identify new business opportunities. [Source: MHI Global] 78% of salespeople use social media to outsell their peers. [Source: Forbes via The Brevet Group] 91% of customers say they’d give referrals, but only 11% of salespeople ask for them. [Source: Dale Carnegie via The Brevet Group] Salespeople who actively sell by referral earn 4 to 5 times more than those who don’t. [Source: Top Sales World via The Brevet Group] 3. Success Breeds More Success Improve sales processes by aligning selling strategies... 40% of sales teams don't have a playbook. [Source: Salesforce] Companies with a playbook are 33% more likely to be high performers. [Source: Salesforce] 96% of world-class sales teams know why their top performers are successful. But only 46% of average sales teams can say the same. [Source: MHI Global] Improve conversion rates using success stories... 89% of world-class sales teams review the positive results of their solution (i.e. case studies) with strategic accounts. But only 33% of average sales teams do the same. [Source: MHI Global] 4. Good Management Makes a Big Difference 55% of the people making their living in sales don’t have the right skills to be successful. [Source: Caliper Corp via The Brevet Group] 93% of world-class sales organizations say their management team is highly effective in helping advance sales opportunities. But only 47% of average sales organizations say the same. [Source: MHI Global] 96% of world-class sales teams say their management team is held highly accountable for the teams' continuous improvement. But only 43% of average sales teams say the same. [Source: MHI Global] What other studies have helped your sales team? Are we missing important research statistics that will help sales organizations improve the way they work? Let us know in the comments below, and include links to the studies you've read!

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