10 Tips for Setting Priorities

Topic: Exploration, Strategies, Top 10|

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As a student and entrepreneur, it can be quite tough attempting to juggle all of the tasks on my todo list.  Below are some great tips on setting priorities written by home office expert Lisa Kanarek.

  1. Use a paper-based, electronic or computerized list to keep track of your tasks, instead of relying on your memory.  A list will give you a clear idea of what you need to accomplish.
  2. Which tasks could you handle another day?  If you would face no consequences by moving a task forward, move it ahead another day or another week.  But be careful not to put it off too long!
  3. Know the difference between important and urgent.  Important means a task needs to be done, while urgent means it must be done immediately.  Knowing the difference between the two will make prioritizing easier.
  4. Realize that you can’t do everything.  This will help you to realistically prioritize your tasks.
  5. Determine if postponing the task would affect other projects you are working on.  Tasks and projects can have a domino effect.  If you do one task, yet fail to do another, you may have wasted effort on the first task.
  6. Set clear goals.  There’s a saying, “If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you get there?”  By not setting clear goals, you may be accomplishing tasks with short-term benefits.
  7. Decide if the task will help you achieve your goals.  If so, give it a higher priority.
  8. Are you making a task a top priority because i’s easy?  Don’t be fooled by easy tasks, especially when they could be done days or weeks later.
  9. Focus on quality, not quantity of tasks.  Accomplishing a few tasks that are a higher priority is better than accomplishing several lower priority tasks.
  10. Which task will increase your income?  If the task will only serve to keep you busy, it is not a top priority.  Think in terms of how the task will improve your productivity and performance.

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