Prioritization is a superpower. But unlike x-ray vision or super strength, it’s easier to master than you might think. Let’s take a moment to pause and reflect.

  • Microsoft’s new 2022 Future Of Work Report confirms what many of us have seen (or felt) first hand—burnout is on the rise.
  • 38% of survey respondents tied the increase in burnout to an “overwhelming workload”. A lot of factors can lead to heavy workloads, but lack of clear priorities (or constantly shifting ones) is a common culprit.
  • The good news is that creating that compass doesn’t need to be difficult. The first step is to involve the right people.
  • At the team or department level, the ideal cast is a mix of subject matter experts, front-line do-ers and people with decision making authority.
  • The next step is to define the options you’re prioritizing. This will probably be a mix of things you’re doing already and things you might do to achieve your goals.
  • After that, it’s time to choose a framework. There are many options here. Your best choice will depend on a few variables, including the nature of the things being prioritized and the degree of rigour required.
  • Frameworks we’ve road tested successfully include Stop-Start-ContinueMoSCoWWeighted Scorecard and the Eisenhower Matrix.
  • The latter takes its name from this helpful nugget of wisdom from Dwight Eisenhower: “What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.”
  • Whichever framework you pick, you’ll need to define some criteria. What makes potential actions valuable? It’s best to question together as a group to maximize buy-in.
  • The next-to-last step is to define the process—what happens when and who owns it.
  • Ideally this process becomes a repeated practice and not just a one-time occurrence.
  • If you want to dive deeper into prioritization, check out Do This First. It’s a prioritization handbook we created specifically for marketing leaders. And it’s free to download.
Issue #144
Jun 5, 2022

Further Reading