We all have tasks to complete. Sometimes these tasks are a part of a project, but sometimes they simply are work that is required to be completed. Some attributes if tasks look similar no matter what the task is:
- A task has a purpose.
- Usually, there is a specific result or output from the task.
- There is an input into your task. (Something that you start with and then build on to complete the task.
When you have a task, you achieve a result by taking the input, adding effort (your work), and observing the output result. If you are familiar with process management, you will notice that this definition of a task is similar to an explanation of a process. A process (and a task) has an input, a transformation, and an output.
A task is something that you do. You might be able to divide a task among different people, but all you do is assign smaller tasks to each of those people.
A task is getting something done. You can usually repeat the task’s steps if you had to do the same thing over again. And if you are managing your tasks right, you can see how they are repeatable and easy to organize. They are like building blocks. If you know that you have the right inputs, you can organize tasks by effort, complexity, and time estimated, and you can select the best one to do next.
Tomorrow we’ll talk about the relationship between project management and task management.