Today’s businesses remind employees that there are no heroics for pulling long hours of work—and for good reason. Studies have shown that the amount of time you spend working does not equate to higher efficiency or productivity. Our brains max out after a period of time and spending more time doing unfocused work just lengthens project deadlines. ‘Work efficiently, not more’ seems to be the motto of the day, and that’s why prioritization techniques and tips are big business among the most innovative and productive companies.
Prioritization is integrated into management systems like monday.com and SugarCRM because the function helps organize and assign levels of urgency to tasks so that employees can take on the most important responsibilities first, and have a schedule for the remaining priorities thereafter. Doing so creates an efficient work process that everyone can stick to, be accountable for, and execute with less time wasted. Long hours become unimportant when it is clear what resources and people are needed to complete a goal effectively, and how management can better allocate both to hit deadlines effectively.
Many managers use prioritization techniques for a wide range of objectives, including”
- communicating project progress
- addressing change management
- mapping processes
- organizing stakeholders
- creating project plans
- organizing projects and tasks
To help you understand the importance of prioritization for productivity within your workforce, we’ve compiled a list of prioritization tips to help you better manage your time. Many of these methods are integrated into platforms like monday.com and SugarCRM and are enhanced by the digital interfaces and user experience designs which are easy on the eyes and easy to use.
Understand the Goals and Determine a Classification Structure
Ideally, prioritization should clearly establish the importance and rank of tasks from highest to lowest. This ranking should clearly define the urgent matters to facilitate decisions and actions that keep projects moving forward.
It’s important to know how tasks are being classified. For example, some projects can be classified by actions or tasks, value to the business, or success probability, while others can be classified by outcomes and effects. Once the classification configuration has been determined, it can be broken into tiers that set the tasks or actions in order of urgency. For example, you may choose to label your tiers with a structure like the following:
- Emergency: These tasks must be addressed or they could result in major financial, operational, or physical damage or losses.
- Urgent: These tasks will affect the success of the deliverables if not completed within a specific timeframe.
- High Priority: These tasks are essential to project completion and delivery but might not have a specific timeframe.
- Medium Priority: These are routine tasks that must be completed, but are not critical in time or major operational outcomes.
- Low Priority: This work is not essential to the project delivery or success. It may enhance and increase the value of the project, but will not derail it if not completed.
Set Deadlines based on Classification
Setting and clarifying these tiers makes it clear what duties need to be executed right away and the outcomes if they are not completed. These tiers are often assigned with deadlines to ensure people know when items need to be finished and what happens if they’re not. The cause and effect are clear and this makes individuals accountable and more responsible for their own time management. In other circumstances, classification can help facilitate the creation of deadlines for longer-term strategic plans that involve multiple stakeholders.
Ensure All Departments Are Aligned on the Objectives and Outcomes
Various departments view priorities differently. Everyone thinks their request is critical until they weigh it against the company-wide objectives with other departments. With classification techniques, the real mission-critical goals become clear, and departments can reach a consensus on the deliverables that most impact the objectives. This fosters effective project plans and schedules that keep all departments focused on clear company goals. In effect, there is less time wasted on less important company tasks, while the most impactful ones are pushed forward with employee buy-in.
Looking for more prioritization tips to help you better manage your time? Contact us today or learn about how we help our clients achieve maximum efficiency.