Planning: Quality Assurance & Control
Posted August 9, 2009on:
Planning a writing project establishes the framework for writing the document and sets the stage for all subsequent work: conceptual design, gathering information, writing, and evaluation.
The decisions you make in the planning phase will be used throughout the project to guide your work and, eventually, to help judge the results. Planning allows you to measure whether the document meets project requirements.
After your meetings with the project team, write a memo containing the planning questions and answers. Distribute copies to all members of the team with a request for feedback. It is imperative for the success of the project that you get buy-in from everyone. No going forward with the project until all team members agree on each point!
If there are any subsequent changes to any of the planning decisions, send a written copy of the changes to everyone. Be prepared to negotiate your way to a final agreement with all team members.
If you are the entire team at your company, then ask yourself the planning questions, make the decisions, and write down your answers. Formalize the process to clarify your thinking and establish a benchmark for judging the outcome of your work. Oh — be sure to run the memo by your boss, so there are no unexpected surprises late in the project.
Planning is the first step in maintaining control of your work. It is absolutely indispensable.