In every project you will have in your career, you will have to learn how to manage your priorities. Truly, it is easier said than done, especially if everything on your work IS a priority. Gaining the knowledge on how to prioritize your tasks will positively affect the success of your project, your team’s engagement, as well as your role as a leader.
Here are six steps to prioritizing projects that are difficult to organize. This will help you manage your team’s workload and hit deadlines.
Make a list of all your tasks
Get everything you could possibly consider finishing in a day. Don’t mind the order for now.
Identify which is urgent and which is important. Check if you have any tasks that need immediate attention. These are the tasks that if they are not completed within the day or in a few hours, serious negative consequence will arise.
Next, check your important work, and identify which carries the highest value to the company/ organization you are working for. This will make you recognize exactly which types of tasks have top priority over the others.
For example, prioritize client concerns before your internal work; attending a client meeting before doing your reports.
Order tasks by estimated effort
If you have a lot of tasks, there will be some that seem to be a tie in priority standing. Check their estimate, and start with the task that you think will take the most effort to complete. According to productivity experts, suggest working on the lengthier task first. However, if you cannot focus on these projects before finishing the shorter task, then go with what you feel is right.
Be flexible and adaptable
Always expect change. Know that your priorities will change, however still stay focused on the tasks that you are committed to completing.
Know when to cut
Most of the time, you won’t be able to finish what is on your list, even after making a list of your priorities. After you prioritize your tasks, cut the remaining tasks off your list and focus on the priorities that you know you must complete for the day. Take a deep breath and dive in.