“Your ability to select your most important task, to begin it, then to concentrate on it single-mindedly – until it is complete – is the key to high levels of performance, max level of productivity – for growing your business”
Priority Topics: List of all the Tasks, Urgent vs. Important, Value of the Task, Order Tasks by “estimated effort”, Flexible & Adaptable, Kill, Distractions.
Why? All projects—especially large, complex projects (a Startup Business) —need clear priorities. Easier said than done. You can count on technical Startups, no matter how “well planned” – in order to progress – change directions, re-focus, re-prioritize to pursue their new Vision. It’s just the natural order of things – due to changing circumstances. Knowing how to prioritize your tasks affects the success of your Startup, the engagement of your team, and your role as a leader in growing your business.
Top Priority. One of the biggest challenges for project managers and leaders is accurately prioritizing the work that matters on a daily basis. Even if you have the best project management software on the planet, you’re the one who enters information into the tool. And, you don’t want to fall into the role of crying “top priority” for every aspect of your Startup that comes down the road. Just as you have to be diligent and have the right kind of insight to ensure that nobody’s working on yesterday’s priorities – always keep your Team informed of the priorities & Vision. It often takes a lot of practice to get this right.
How? To help you manage your team’s workload and hit your deadline Goals, here are 7 steps to “prioritizing” your Startup tasks that have a lot of elements to them for growing your business.
- Collect a List of all the Tasks – you need to do in the next day, week, month, etc. Put together everything you could possibly consider getting done in a day and few days out. Don’t worry about the order, or the number of items up front. We’ll sort that out later.
- Identify Urgent vs. Important. The next step is to see if you have any tasks that need “immediate” attention. We’re talking about work that, if not completed by the end of the day or in the next several hours, will have serious negative (-) consequences (ie, missed client deadline; missed demonstration or release deadlines, etc.). Check to see if there are any high-priority dependencies that rely on you finishing up a piece of work now.
- Assess Value of the Task. Next, look at your important work and identify what carries the highest “value” to your business. As a general practice, you want to recognize exactly which types of tasks have top priority over the others. For example, focus on: Client projects before Internal work; setting up the new CEO’s computer (also a short Task vs) before re-configuring the database (a long Task) ; answering Customer Support tickets (urgent) before writing Training materials (important, and so on. Another way to assess value is to look at how many people are impacted by your work. In general, the more people involved or impacted, the higher the stakes (urgent).
- Order Tasks by “estimated effort” – time & team. If you have tasks that seem to tie for priority standing, check their “time-to-do” estimates, and start on whichever one you think will take the most effort to complete. Most Productivity Experts suggest the tactic of starting the “lengthier” task first. But, if you feel like you can’t focus on your meatier tasks, before you finish up the shorter task, then go with your gut and do that. It can be motivating to check a small task off the list before diving into deeper waters.
- Be Flexible & Adaptable. Uncertainty & change is a given when starting a new business. Know that your priorities will change – and often – when you least expect them to – because of circumstances. But—and here’s the trick—you also want to stay “focused” on the tasks you’re committed to completing, because you’ve determined that they’re very important.
- Know when to Kill it. You probably can’t get to everything on your list. After you “prioritize” your tasks and look at your estimates, down-grade the remaining tasks on your list, and focus on the priorities that you know you must and can complete for the day. Then take a deep breathe, dive in and be ready for anything.
7. How to handle Distractions.
- Is this Distraction helping me for Growing my Business
- Do not answer calls from “un-recognized” Phone numbers. If it’s really important, they’ll leave a message.
- Do not agree to Meetings or Calls with no clear Agenda or End time.
- Do not let people Ramble and not get to the point.
- Do not check Email constantly. (ie, morning, after lunch, befor you leave)
- Do not have excessive Communication – with low-value, high-
- Do not expect Work to fill a “void” – that relationships and activities should. Work is not all of life.
Comments: Do you know any other Tips for setting Priorities for Growing your Business.
from Liquid Planner.com 08 April 14 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz