Priority of Work

Yesterday I referenced the Pareto Principle, where 20% of the effort produces 80% of the results.  The applied learning question then becomes, how do I decide what the 20% efforts should be?  Below are some random process shaping points to guide a culture of continuous improvement/excellence:

  • (WHY) a clearly established team mindset of shared accountability for determined results
  • the most important actions (result producing) equals the most uncomfortable
  • drill down deeply to determine what, if done, will make all the rest easier or irrelevant
  • blocks of time (1 to 3 hours) are necessary to understand and then “solve” the uncomfortable in simplest form; commit the plan into a recorded format
  • determine what success looks like; the more measureable the better
  • recognize that being “busy” or “too busy” is a form of laziness– indiscriminate actions that are usually a guise for avoiding the critically important, but uncomfortable actions
  • act from the prioritized and agreed upon team objectives, resetting the stage for all to succeed (those that opt out of team resolution clearly wouldn’t belong, but as a result of their actions/inactions, not just opinion)
  • what you do together is more important than how you do everything else; doing something well does not make it important; candid feedback required
  • build from and connect priority actions to the positive assets and actions of the team and team members
  • celebrate observed and demonstrated progress
  • the first identified priorities and subsequent actions may not be correct; learn, apply, and iterate the actions toward the desired results
  • everyone’s responsibility to be a leader here

I hope this collection of thoughts helps you to make your reasoned choice for the 20% of effort that produces the 80% of results.




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