The Eisenhower Matrix prioritization tool helps people decide what to work. It does this assessing the urgency and importance of their tasks. Tasks identified as important and urgent are done first. Important but non-urgent tasks are done later. Urgent & unimportant tasks are delegated and non-urgent and unimportant tasks are eliminated.
Why do you need to prioritize your tasks? Before we get into solutions and methods, I will briefly. The Effort Impact Matrix is a simple yet powerful tool for having a group conversation to make clear what all your priorities should be. It’s an exercise you can do with your teams that’ll help you all work out what you should be working on. The Effort Impact Matrix is one of the tools we use all the time.Summary by The World of Work Project
The Eisenhower Matrix Prioritization Tool helps people improve their personal effectiveness. You can learn more about personal effectiveness more broadly it in our podcast on the topic:
This tool is a four-box, 2×2 matrix model that to help with the prioritization of tasks.
To use it, individuals consider the importance of a task on the vertical axis and the urgency of a task on the horizontal axis. You should do tasks that are both urgent and important first. And you should schedule tasks that are important but not urgent for a later time. As for your tasks which are urgent but unimportant, you should delegated them as much as possible. Finally, you should eliminate (not do at all) those tasks which are neither urgent nor important.
The Eisenhower Matrix Prioritization Tool is a useful way of thinking about things, and a useful tool for certain people.
Task focused people often benefit from reviewing their to-do list first thing in the morning to decide what to work on. If you’re the type of person who does this, you might benefit from using the Eisenhower Matrix as it provides a structure for the prioritization activity, and results in a clear plan of action for the day ahead.
In practice, there are some challenges with the model when you’re managing not just yourself, but a range of stakeholders. Specifically, challenges often arise around importance.
Things that are important for one person in the world of work may not be important for another. Something your customer wants may appear more “important” than something your supplier wants.But prioritizing between these two stakeholders is a judgement call. Making these judgement calls sometimes creates a division between what is good for the overall organization, and what is good for the individual making the decision.
Despite this challenge, this is a good tool that’s worth experimenting. If you try it, you might find it’s helpful for you.
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This post on The Eisenhower Matrix Prioritization Tool is based on original work attributed to former American president Dwight D. Eisenhower, but we have no specific academic references for further reading.
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Carrier, J. (2019). The Eisenhower Matrix Prioritization Tool: A Simple Summary. Retrieved [insert date] from The World of Work Project: https://worldofwork.io/2019/08/eisenhower-matrix-prioritization-tool/
The ‘prioritize your work’ agenda often comes with its fair share of roadblocks. As a result, you may find a hard time juggling several important tasks at the same time. This, in turn, often becomes a recipe for disaster.
Nowadays, you can try to be productive in your personal life by using any productivity app available on your mobile device. Alternatively, you can also use a project management application like nTask to prioritize and manage your work aspect.
The question is: What are the key methods that you can use to prioritize your work to remain unaffected?
In this post, we are going to discuss exactly that.
Here are 9 of the most effective methods to get started toward any work prioritization agenda.
Here are the effective methods that we are going to talk about today.
Let’s take a look at all of them in detail.
When you think about work prioritization, you need to have a Master List. This list contains all of the tasks and processes that you have to perform, and also helps you to understand how you can prioritize those tasks.
This list is amazing, but you also need a definitive system that will help you to understand which tasks are important and have to be performed as soon as possible.
This is where the Eisenhower Matrix comes in. Developed by American President Dwight Eisenhower, the matrix contains four quadrants that help you differentiate between the severity of the tasks you are trying to perform. These four quadrants are labeled as follows:
You can have your priorities highlighted but what will you do when many of the tasks that you have to perform have the same priority? How will you differentiate between them?
Here’s where the ABCDE method comes into its own. Developed by Brian Tracy, this method is incredible in differentiating between different tasks that have the same priority.
Here’s how you can use it to your advantage.
If you want to figure out your most important goals in your personal and work life, you can use Warren Buffet’s 2-list strategy.
What you have to do using this strategy is that you need to write down 25 of the most important goals that you have in your mind. When you have those goals narrowed down, you need to encircle 5 of the most important goals that are important.
When you have those goals encircled, you can cut all of the remaining goals out of your schedule and into the “avoid at all costs” list.
Time Multiplying is an incredible strategy to save time if you want to manage your precious hours around the numerous tasks and processes that you have to perform on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
Using this strategy, all you have to do is to work on the right tasks at the right time. Just remember that you have to pace yourself and think carefully because the right tasks can give you more time to work on your tasks but if your selection is not wise, you are going to have even less time than before.
This strategy can be applied with small strategies that can help you multiply the time on hand, and you can even use time management applications like nTask to make sure that you have enough time to work on your most important work processes.
Check it out:
One of the best things that you can do is to make sure that you have all of your goals compiled in-front of you as a list. When you have that compilation ready, all you need to do is to break them all into little chunks.
These little chunks are workable tasks that can be easily achieved. You can divide these tasks into daily, weekly, and monthly tasks so that you are not overwhelmed and easily perform them to achieve success.
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However short you want your list of things to be, you can never quite get it down to the number you had in mind. That means that you always get a massive list of things with varying urgencies and importance.
In this case, you need a system that will help you to dig deeper and find out the true importance of the tasks. That system is called Ivy Lee Method, which was developed over 100 years ago but still can help you rank your daily tasks according to their urgency and importance.
Here are the steps that make up the Ivy Lee Method.
“Eating the frog” is a strategy that wants you to work on the most important and difficult tasks at the start of the day.
This helps you to have your day be more productive because when you get those difficult tasks completed at the start of the day, you gain momentum and get a boost of energy to tackle the rest of the easy tasks effortlessly.
One thing that you need to make sure that you have in your personal and work life, is a flexible mindset. What we mean by that is the flexibility to change your mind according to the need and requirement of the tasks at hand.
Most of the time in our professional lives or even in our personal lives, we get entangled in such a way that even if we see that something can be done in a new and easy way, we tend to do it in the tedious way that we have always used.
This needs to change and for that, you need to have a flexible mindset, to incorporate any type of change that might come your way.
Every professional knows about the specific hours of the day that they work very productively. These hours can be at the start of the day or even in the late hours of their work-day.
When you have those hours figured out, you have to make sure that you prioritize those important tasks that you have on your schedule, around those highly productive hours. This will help you be more efficient and productive daily.
Admittedly, when it’s about being more productive, it is an art. Don’t expect to master the brush strokes during the first few attempts. To that end, eating a couple of frogs first thing in the morning isn’t such a bad start.
Give it a shot and see where it goes.
Best of luck & Happy nTasking!