Prioritization is defined as activities where you list the items you want to do on their level of value. It means that you can now do the most important task first and gradually complete the others that are not as important.
Prioritization helps a person to handle urgent jobs promptly so that you can reach your goals more quickly and efficiently.
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Meaning of prioritization
In simple terms, prioritization is a process that means evaluating a group of things and placing them in the order of either urgency or importance. It is necessary to address those tasks first that are urgent, and it is only possible if you have prioritized your list beforehand.
Maintain a systematic calendar if you are interested in keeping to your natural order of things. Remember, once you learn how to deal with prioritizing, you automatically are open to a lot of free time that you were earlier unable to enjoy because of a chaos living.
One of the biggest challenges a human being faces in both his personal and professional life is prioritizing the schedule of his work that is relevant to his daily activities. Once you are successful in your endeavors, you can manage to arrange the order of your work dealings more effectively.
Examples of prioritization
Prioritizing is applicable in every field. A person can take its help in both the personal and professional world to increase his work productivity.
For example, an individual is having some serious weight issues in his personal life and is unable to take out the necessary time to take up his gym lessons.
He thinks that his workload is not allowing him the time to do so, and as a result, he has been suffering from excess weight and health problems recently.
What he needs to do is create a to-do-list for the next day and write down the things that need to be done throughout the day. Now list all the activities in the order of their importance and schedule your gym hours at the most convenient time for you.
Once your mindset is clear, and you have recognized the fact that the gym schedule has fit in your calendar, it becomes a bit easy to follow it up.
Remember, when you have listed and defined your priorities in the correct ranking order, you are helping yourself immensely. Now you can step away from a chaotic day and lead a life that is organized and planned to the hilt.
In a business setting the professionals to have several important assignments to complete so that they can turn over the project in the stipulated period. Managing all of them in a given time frame becomes very hectic and often leads to mismanagement.
The one thing you can do at this point is to prioritize your work so that you can achieve your goal promptly.
Plan and prioritize
Follow the given steps if you are interested in planning and prioritizing your work schedule-
1. Know about your tasks beforehand
Make a conscious decision to know about the tasks that need to be done the next day. At the onset, you do not have to worry about the order or your preference or its importance. The important thing is to collect information about the tasks.
2. Identify the urgent tasks
The second step in this series is very important. You have a random list where your entire work schedule for the next day is listed. You just need to see and identify the tasks that want immediate attention and look top priority.
Yes, each of these tasks is important, but surely some of them are more so than others. Identify them, for instance, is any of your projects due that day, is an important meeting scheduled that cannot be shifted and is there a priority deadline that you have to meet at all costs.
3. Assess the value of your work
You have identified the work that looks top priority to you, but you must recognize that the work you are listing as top-order carries the highest value for your company.
Suppose you are due to complete three major works to do in the day now it is up to you to recognize which is more worthy of completing first and then next and so on.
Remember, when a large number of people are involved in a task or the work has an impact on a larger work field, the stakes become higher, and it should be assessed as a top priority.
4. Look at the estimated effort and then prioritize
Sometimes two or three work comes up simultaneously that are equally important, and it becomes impossible to choose one from the list over the other. It is then you must take into consideration the estimated amount of time that work will need to finish.
As per the experts, you should start with the one that takes up most of your time and gradually to one that will take the least time. The tactic is to complete the lengthier task first because at the onset you are fresh and can work quickly.
Moreover, once you have finished the difficult and lengthier one, it will become easier for you to focus on the ones that will not take that much of your time.
Remember it is your personal choice and if you want to take up with the ones that will take the least amount of time you should do so.
It can prove stimulating to finish one work in the quickest of time and then gradually move up the ladder.
5. Be flexible
Flexibility is an important trait in any individual. Change is a given fact, and uncertainty is part of our life. Some days you might have created the perfect work schedule and were working in accordance when you get a call that your boss is in your vicinity and wants an important update.
You might not have been prepared for it in advance, but that must change immediately when you get the summons from the top brass. Be adaptable to any kind of change and remain flexible in prioritizing your list at the drop of a hat if you are looking forward to climbing the ladder of success.
6. Know when to draw the line
Once you are aware of the tasks that need to be done beforehand, you can prepare the schedule at night the day before. It gives you enough time to consider what is important and must be given preference to and what could be rescheduled for the latter part of the day.
Once you wake up, you will have a list of your go-to things, and this clear-cut concept will help you to achieve better efficiency and productivity.
Similarly, it is important to draw the line when you feel that your body is giving out. Sometimes the work takes a lot of time and you are unable to complete your to-do list.
At this point in time take a deep breath and decide when you are unable to go on and have to leave it for the next day. Understand your own limitations and work accordingly if you want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
5. Importance of prioritization
You must have heard about the sayings that do not work hard instead of opting for smarter work. This is possible when you are able to prioritize your work schedule as per the demand of your organization.
- When you have a lot to cover, and in a short time period, your mind tends to get distracted. Remember doing a thousand things at once is not the answer for effective work dealing but prioritizing your work and focussing on completing the important one is.
- It is the truth that the people at the top ladder have reached their position because they were able to identify and recognize the work that was important and work their schedule accordingly.
- Prioritize on the work that needs to be done so that you can gain the necessary success. It will increase your capacity to focus on important things.
- Prioritization helps you to clear your goals both mentally and later physically
- Prioritizing ensures the completion of important work in due time
Cons of prioritization
There are few cons of prioritizing that have been listed below –
- Once you start prioritizing you have a to-do list. What happens when the list remains incomplete every day. Do you start with a fresh list on a daily basis and if the answer is yes, then what happens to the work that remained behind the day before. In most cases, it is a common practice to schedule the work at the bottom of the list for a further delay, and this keeps on happening, and you have with yourself some serious unfinished work that was equally important in the scheme of things for the organization.
- Once you develop the habit of prioritizing, you fail to acknowledge that all the work is important and you cannot leave some for later as unimportant one.
How to improve your prioritization skills?
Prioritizing is about knowing and handling the tasks that seem important at that particular point in time. It is not an ingrained habit but can be developed gradually with time and determination.
Some important ways to improve your prioritization skills are listed below-
Understand your strength as well as your weakness so that you can prioritize your schedule accordingly. Determine which ones need your personal attention and which ones you can delegate to others.
2. Know how to prioritize
You can learn to prioritize by going over the things and determining their worth for the company., Once your own mindset is clear, you will be able to do so easily.
3. Balance your resources
You must be aware of the resources in hand if you want to prioritize and complete your task list successfully. The resource might include technologically advanced tools and of course, human resources to whom who can delegate or ask for favors.
Liked this post? Check out the complete series on Time Management