A Semi-scientific Way To Set Your Priorities

Are You very busy and overloaded with lots of tasks, activities or projects?

You just don’t know how to set the right priorities?

In this article you’ll get some easy steps that I recently used in Lean Six Sigma Black Belt program when selecting the right projects for a multimillion company.

You can follow the same steps in your situation.

Step #1: Make a list

If you don’t have one yet start using a list. Put all the things, tasks, projects and activities you need/want to do on that list.

One of my project team wanted to reduce the workload at a Customer Service department. We started putting down on a piece of paper all the tasks they were carrying out every day. The length of the list surprised both them and their manager.

Getting clarity about the situation in this way enabled the team to set right priorities and increase efficiency even during peak-times. By the end of the Lean Six Sigma project the team has reduced the workload between 44% and 52%!

Step #2: Identify your customer

Sounds simple but you’ll realize there are many recipients of your work. Who are they? Make a list of them. Think about your end customer, your colleague from next door, your manager or supervisor…just to name a few.

They’ll judge your work. Whether you ask them or not.They decide whether you satisfy their needs or not. You better be clear on them because your work is to serve them the best you can.

One of my Black Beltstudents said that my Customer Requirement Matrix is the most effective tool he has ever seen.

Because in the matrix we record all the customers and stakeholders impacted and also their requirements concerning Quality, Time and Costs. Such overview helps to identify not only all the most important customers but also if there is a contradiction between the different requirements.

This Black Belt has just finished his first project removing 100% of inkt contamination from their production process of electrical parts.

Step #3: Identify 3 – 5 selection criteria (based on customer requirements)

Get the top 3 – 5 customers and identify their requirements. No more than 5. These are the requirements your customers find important. Think about their requirements concerning quality, delivery (time-related) or costs.

Some examples for such requirements:

– improves quality

– reduces wastes

– reduces lead times

– reduces complexity

– reduces costs

– increases sales

– easy to execute

– high potential / high demand

– supports strategy

– gives you high exposure

Just pick 3 to 5 and modify it to your own situation. These are the selection criteria to prioritize your tasks against.

In steps #4 though #8 you learn how to weight these criteria and correlate them to your tasks or projects to finally arrive to your laser-sharp priority list.

Learn How At

Discover How to Improve Your Career, Solve Almost Any Business Challenges, And Earn at Least $100 K per Year (based on

Warm regards,


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