Flow Chart Example

The flow chart is a planning tool that develops the task. The process that a team goes through is completely visible in a flow diagram and can be seen in their right sequence. The flow chart can also incorporate team roles, i.e., which team member is responsible for which sub-task. This kind of flow chart makes the team process a lot more organised and serves as a precursor before the team kick-starts the actual work.

Situation:A consumer electronics company has just introduced a new gadget and wants to create a special short-term promotional offer for all those who recently bought similar products at the company’s online store. They put together a small team that would be responsible for designing the offer, executing it, and ensuring sales and success for the promotion.

Team Process Flow Chart:

The above example illustrates the sequence of events needed to accomplish the task. When flow charts are used in the computer industry, they usually follow certain conventions and symbols such as diamond shape, rectangles or round shape. These shapes symbolise certain meanings in the process flow (the meanings have been highlighted in the illustration above). The use of these symbols is basically meant to simplify interpretation of the process flow. For instance, the diamond shape is a decision point and is a powerful mechanism in the flow chart diagram. A ‘yes’ means you can proceed further and ‘no’ at this stage means you have to change track or rectify something before you can move ahead. But not all flow charts need to strictly conform to these symbols. Flow charts can be cast in any simple visual way that clearly explains the process necessary to complete a task from start to finish.

Team performance and the efficacy of the team are significantly eroded if the team cannot work in an organised manner. Confusion leads to inefficiency and errors. The flow chart is a simple tool that helps a team mull over a task and elaborate on all factors that go into performing that task. The example given here is a simple situation with a simple process. Teams usually face much more complex situations. A flow diagram of this nature significantly improves process clarity. Once the team gets the process right, the team has a greater chance of achieving success on the task.

How to Ensure Process Clarity in Teams
Process Change Accelerated Through Teams


Flow Charting: http://www.skymark.com/resources/tools/flowchart.asp
Flow Charting: http://quality.enr.state.nc.us/tools/flowchart.htm

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