How will you decide on your top priorities?
Whoever screams the loudest?
Yeah, I’ve heard those screams before.
Several years ago, I worked at a company where the CEO launched a new company initiative. My boss wanted our division to be way out in front, leading the charge.
I guided my teams to take action. We rolled up our sleeves. We had conference calls spanning the globe. We made progress quickly.
But it wasn’t good enough or fast enough for my boss. He wanted more. Now.
Over time, it became harder to imagine how this initiative was actually going to pay off. We provided time-critical financial services — and every minute mattered.
One day he pushed me too far. I admit it. I had a meltdown.
I insisted that, as a leadership team, we identify our priorities — from top to bottom.
We listed 25 projects and initiatives currently on our plate. We voted on the exact priority order for the entire list.
Guess where his pet project landed?
Dead last. Bottom of the list at #25. We never talked about it again.
When you have limited time to get everything done — and you hear the words “Everything is #1 priority” — it’s the sound of avalanche cannons warning you to run for safety.
It’s time to sit down and agree on the list of priorities.
You can start by taking these 3 steps:
- Identify criteria to evaluate priorities
Think about your role — and the role of your team — within the company.
How do you contribute to the growth of the company?
What activities lead to increased revenue? Providing excellent service? Increasing efficiency? Or attracting new clients?
Identify a short list that you view as the key drivers to you and your team having the most impact on the company’s success.
2. Collaborate with your team to identify the top 3 to 5 criteria
Discuss the criteria with your team. Seek their input.
Select only 3 to 5 criteria to use for evaluating priorities. (More than that could weigh you down!)
By taking the time to have this conversation, you’re helping everyone understand the logic behind the priorities.
And, since you’re in crunch mode, you can’t afford to have anyone on the team wander off the trail.
3. Evaluate the list of items using this criteria
Once you’re clear on the criteria — and you evaluate each item — you can confidently create a list of items, in priority order.
And, guess what? There will be only ONE #1 priority on the list.
Would you like ideas for how to come up with this list as a team?
Stay tuned for a FREE training module next week. I’ll share my favorite tips for doing this!