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24 Oct

Set the goal first, prioritize later

Datum: 2012-10-24 12:00

When we have more to be done than there is time to do things in, we need to pri­or­i­tize amongst all the things we have to do. 

We can not do every­thing at the same time and per­haps not in a sin­gle day, so we need to deter­mine what to do first and what to do next. 

As you most like­ly know, there are sev­er­al pri­or­i­ti­za­tion-tools we can make use of. You might have encoun­tered some of them in Done! (such as the impor­tan­t/ur­gent-matrix) and some you will be intro­duced to in due time. 

Meth­ods and tools can come in handy, but before we can even begin to make use of them, we need to make some­thing clear. 

Dif­fer­ent tasks have dif­fer­ent weights

We do not do all the things we busy our­selves with in our dai­ly lives, all the dif­fer­ent tasks and doings, just for noth­ing.

They are the means to accom­plish­ing some­thing, be it big or small. They are intend­ed to be the lit­tle build­ing bricks that togeth­er with the tasks our col­leagues per­form pro­pel our com­pa­ny forward. 

But some tasks con­tribute more than oth­ers to this pro­gres­sion. To make the right pri­or­i­ties is to pri­or­i­tize those tasks which are of greater impor­tance in mak­ing the busi­ness devel­op in the desired direction. 

Keep­ing this in mind, clar­i­fy what goals you want and need to attain in your par­tic­u­lar posi­tion in the company. 

If we do not know where we want to go, it is dif­fi­cult to know what is to be con­sid­ered impor­tant. If the goals are unclear, we have to resort to fol­low­ing our gut-feel­ing, intu­ition and rep­tile-brain to set our pri­or­i­ties. Our lives will be made con­sid­er­ably more com­fort­able if we instead have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to pri­or­i­tize consciously. 

Do this

  1. Take an emp­ty sheet of paper, grab a pen and quick­ly write down your three most impor­tant goals for this year. If you can think of more than three, put those down as well. 

    These goals can be key-fig­ures that mea­sure how well you suc­ceed in terms of rev­enues, results, vol­ume, qual­i­ty, lev­el of ser­vice, how pleased your clients are, how hap­py the employed are, or some­thing else of impor­tance to you. If you have one or sev­er­al impor­tant dead­lines through­out the year these could also be regard­ed as goals. As can sig­nif­i­cant mile­stones, that is, events which we believe will, if they occur, be of sig­nif­i­cant impor­tance to the busi­ness in the long-run.

  2. If you have dif­fi­cul­ties think­ing of goals, take a look at the com­mon goals for your depart­ment or com­pa­ny, and ask your­self what you do in your role that con­tributes to the attain­ment of those objec­tives. Now for­mu­late your indi­vid­ual goals while keep­ing this in mind. 

  3. You could also ask your boss or man­ag­er. If he or she doesn’t know either, it might prove a valu­able oppor­tu­ni­ty for a dis­cus­sion in which you can pan out goals that will make your work-life easier. 

  4. If you sus­pect that you will need to be remind­ed of what the goals are from time to time, write them down on a note which you paste some­where in the office where you will catch glimpses of it frequently. 

Clear pri­or­i­ties allows for relaxed efficiency 

If you clar­i­fy what goals you are work­ing towards, you will set your­self up for being able to pri­or­i­tize more accu­rate­ly in both the short- and long run.

It will be much eas­i­er to deter­mine what tasks are of greater impor­tance and which are of less. There­after you will be able to work know­ing that you are mak­ing the right pri­or­i­ties right now and that there is noth­ing else you should be doing instead. 

What is your method?

How do you clar­i­fy your goals to your­self? Leave a com­ment to spread your best tip!