The Power of the Infallible Checklist

Checklists work for a simple reason, as humans we tend to forget things. When juggling between numerous tasks, we may miss out on a few.

In an increasingly complex world, checklists are the ultimate supervision tool to simplify the execution of cumbersome procedures and ensure your tasks are being executed in the right order. A checklist is an exhaustive list of tasks that are essential for the smooth functioning of your business, work or even life. As a much-appreciated review tool, it saves you from errors that could otherwise cost your business huge losses in terms of time or money. Each of my organizations and teams have patronized the usage of checklists and I proclaim its utilization to obtain better results.

The creation of this time-tested method to inspect everything is running smoothly involves a simple method:

  • What: Write down the tasks that have a major impact and are to be cross-checked to ensure everything is as per planned schedule. You may describe in detail or just note down the barebones.
  • Who: Make note of who is responsible for completing the task and reverting with the progress report.
  • When: Mention if the updates are to be provided weekly, monthly or quarterly depending on the relevance of the task.
  • Review: Lastly, decide the day and time for periodical reviews of task status. The person responsible is to provide updates on the progress made so far. Any obstacles to task completion can be discussed and solutions to problem-solve can be given.

The regular use of a checklist culture offers you the following benefits:

  • Noting down the tasks or steps involved for work completion no longer requires you to repeatedly remember them. By simply referring to the checklist, you can save your time and effort which can alternatively used for more creative assignments.
  • Some of the tasks or steps can be easily delegated to some of your team members for execution within a definite timeline.
  • The tool reduces the likelihood of tasks being overlooked or missed out.
  • Checklist culture reduces error rates and infuses discipline into your regime.
  • It instils a sense of confidence and conviction of executing tasks properly with a zero rate of error.
  • No matter how experienced you are, once cannot defy the benefits of well-designed check lists. They are instrumental in enhancing service delivery and are widely made use of in event planning, home relocation, flight safety, building maintenance, construction projects and so on.

I would like to know valuable insights on how you have been innovatively utilizing checklists to streamline complex business processes. Have there been instances where a checklist saved your business or life from a major blunder?