There are some things that we believe we need to do but which seldom get urgent enough for us to prioritize them above all other tasks. It can be tasks such as correcting something that is just slightly off but in an irritating way. Or it can be creating something that would make a task easier to do, but which is not essential to the completion of the task.
On the one hand these tasks can be important for us to successfully reach our goals in the long-run, but on the other hand there are other tasks we consider more important and which definitely need to get done first. So, we don’t do them — but still wish they would get done.
I recently worked with an organization that had created a ”Go Fish”-corner. They had pasted a bunch of Post-Its in the right, bottom corner of a whiteboard hung on a wall in the middle of the office.
When anyone has a task that would be ”nice to get done” but which you do not see yourself getting to anytime soon, you can write it on a note and paste it in the designated corner. The one who needs to do something completely different for a while to clear their head after having focused intensely on a complicated task for the last couple of hours, can simply pick a note from the ”Go Fish”-corner and have the pleasure of working with something different for an hour that will help someone else in the office as well. Ta-da! What needs to get done, gets done.
If you and your colleagues could use a ”Go Fish”-corner for unprioritized tasks and perhaps even think it is a fun take on the theme of delegating, then choose a corner you reserve for this purpose. Wouldn’t it be nice to have it somewhere where you all often pass by, and located in a room that is never closed so that the corner is available to everybody at all times? It is also a good idea to keep this place close to where you often come to think of things that would be perfect candidates for the board. Should it be close to the coffee machine? Where you have all your ”whiteboard-meetings”? Where you meet often for other reasons?
Delimit the area you will reserve for your Go Fish-game of delegation, and mark it out somehow so that there is no mistaking what kind of corner it is (and what it is used for).
If you after a while realize that it has become more of a waste-dumping-corner than a pool of tasks intended to increase your inspiration and productivity, allow yourself to sift through the tasks pasted there and remove the most apparent trash.
Something new we hadn’t expected
If you create a corner for this office-version of Go Fish, a whole lot of useful tasks will get done which otherwise might have been left at the bottom of to-do-lists indefinitely (or at least for quite a while). If you should ever feel bored or uninspired, you too will get the opportunity to do things you otherwise wouldn’t have thanks to this playful method of delegating.
What’s your way?
Have you found some other creative and fun way to get tasks that tend to be left at the bottom of the pile done in your company?