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Time Management: the Art of Prioritisation

Time Management: The Art of Prioritisation

Prioritisation is the art of deciding the proper order of things.

There are three forms of prioritisation.

  1. Prioritisation by value.
  2. Prioritisation by time deadline pressure.
  3. Prioritisation by logical sequence.

Let us say a few words on each.

1. Prioritisation by value.

Every task has a value. The value of tasks varies over a large range: from extremely valuable; to low value, trivial tasks.

It is important to do the high-value tasks in favour of the low-value tasks.

High value tasks are often not easy. High value tasks are often not pleasurable.

It is a common error to do the easy, or more pleasurable things first.

But you should do the most valuable things first.

Do them, whether or not you find them easy or pleasurable.

Keep asking, "What is the most valuable use of my time?"

Not, "What is the easiest and most pleasurable use of my time".

2. Prioritisation by time deadline pressure.

Every task has to be done at some time. That means there is a deadline pressure. The deadline pressure also varies over a wide range; from long range to short range.

You need to do the deadline driven tasks, before the non-deadline driven tasks.

3. Prioritisation by logical sequence.

Every job is composed of subset tasks, and these subset tasks need to be done in the correct order. It is possible to do the right things, but in the wrong order, and thus get a terrible result.

You put your socks on before your shoes.

You put your seat belt on before you start the engine.

You put your pants on before your trousers. (Unless you are Superman!)

Prioritisation Summary

Think carefully about the ideal logical sequence and order, relating to the tasks.

Do things in the best logical order.

If you would like some help in prioritising your tasks, please try our WhatsNext? Prioritisation app, which allows you to prioritise your own to-do list into the best order.

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