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Planning & Prioritizing for Effective Results

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Planning & Prioritizing for Effective Results

  1. 1. m nagaRAJU
  2. 2. HAVE YOU EVER FELT? nagaRAJU I wish I had more time to finish my tasks I am juggling too many balls I don’t know where to go from here It all is a mess My poor management is affecting my life
  3. 3. OBJECTIVES nagaRAJU  To acquire some effective planning skills  To identify appropriate criteria for prioritizing tasks  To recognize the difference between important and urgent  To learn some effective prioritizing skills  To avoid time stealers
  4. 4. WHAT IS PLANNING? nagaRAJU Planning is developing strategies to accomplish goals. Planning is deciding in advance what to do, how to do, when to do and who is to do it. Planning bridges a gap between from where we are to where we want to go. - Harold, Koontz and O’Donnel
  5. 5. PLANNING IS ESTIMATING & SCHEDULING nagaRAJU 1. How much time does it take? 2. How much effort does it need? 3. Who make my team? 4. What is acceptable success? 5. What are the success criteria? 6. Is the timeline realistic and feasible? 7. Which tasks can be delegated? 8. What is the schedule / milestones? 9. What roadblocks could be anticipated? 10. Is there an alternate plan?
  6. 6. PLANNING FOR SUCCESS nagaRAJU Success Deal out your best effort Develop a Strategy Decide Priorities Draft a To-Do List Design an Action Plan Decide a Goal
  7. 7. ACTIVITY 1 nagaRAJU A 5 10 6 3 Q 2 8 4 J K 9 7 7 5 10 9 J 3 2 4 8 Q K 6 A Q J 9 6 3 A 7 8 4 5 K 10 2 6 4 7 A 10 2 Q K 5 J 8 9 3
  8. 8. WHY PLAN? nagaRAJU  Get a clear focus & direction  Improve efficiency & ensure success  Promote better commitment, control and coordination  Estimate accurately time and effort required  Allow adequate preparation time  Develop definite deadlines and milestones  Eliminate / limit waste & duplication  Helps to delegate, delete & reschedule  Avoid decision dilemmas  Establish measuring yardsticks Proper Prior Planning Promotes Peak Performance
  9. 9. WHY PLAN? nagaRAJU  Take time to make time  Work to a purpose  Identify and organise systems and resources  Support others involved  Avoid and manage stress  Organise personal time Sharpen your axe
  10. 10. TYPES OF PLANS nagaRAJU Types Breadth Strategic Operational Time Frame Long Term Short Term Frequency Single Use Multiple Uses Specificity Directional Specific
  11. 11. PLANNING PITFALLS nagaRAJU  Authenticity / adequacy of data  Ignores creativity and intuition  Conflict between short term competition and long-term survival  Rigidity against changing policies / dynamic environment / external influences
  12. 12. IMPROVING PLANNING SKILLS nagaRAJU  Force yourself to plan (failing to plan is planning to fail)  Write your thoughts down  Uninterrupted planning time (allow unhurried thinking time; plan tomorrow, tonight)  Use post-it notes / highlighter  Begin the day with plan review
  13. 13. IMPROVING PLANNING SKILLS nagaRAJU  Visualize & anticipate problems (Mentally rehearse the steps)  Contingency plans (preventive actions for people, material, mechanical failures)  Schedule regular review meets
  15. 15. MAKE A TO-DO MASTER LIST nagaRAJU Pull together everything you could possibly consider getting done. Don’t worry about the order, or the number of items up front - financial, personal or professional. Allow your mind to be a strategy thinker rather than a memory chip.
  16. 16. MANAGING YOUR TASKS nagaRAJU Do Delegate Delay Delete Time saved is time earned.   ? X
  17. 17. PRIORITIZATION nagaRAJU Do first things first. Prioritization, as a process, is evaluating a group of items and ranking them in order of importance and urgency.
  18. 18. ACTIVITY 2 nagaRAJU Ten Most Important Things you would take to a deserted island 1. A spear 2. A fishing net 3. A match box 4. A knife 5. A flash light 6. An inflatable boat 7. A satellite phone 8. A sleeping bag 9. A rope 10. A sunscreen
  19. 19. PRIORITIZING SKILLS nagaRAJU  Create a master "to do" list of every step  Establish tasks by priority and sequence  Identify critical tasks  Differentiate between urgent and important  Batch tasks in order of importance  Eliminate unimportant, unrealistic tasks  Go to work on one task at a time  Review and make necessary adjustments
  20. 20. WHY PRIORITIZE? nagaRAJU  To do more important things, more of them, more often and doing them better  To overcome ‘shortage’ of time  To feel more effective and powerful  To delegate, eliminate or outsource tasks  To be motivated to do even more  To think better, faster and more creatively
  21. 21. PRIORITIZING nagaRAJU mnRAJU Urgent Not Urgent Important Not Important 1 Eliminate 2 Avoid 3 Reduce 4 Focus Trivia Time wasters Chatting Surfing Watching cricket Oversleeping Interruptions Distractions Some e-mails Popular activities Planning Health Maintenance Prevention Relationships Opportunities Self growth Crises Emergencies Deadlines Pressing issues Fire Accident
  22. 22. ACTIVITY 3 nagaRAJU Things that must get done _________________________________________ _________________________________________ _________________________________________ Things that should get done _________________________________________ _________________________________________ _________________________________________ Things I would like to get done _________________________________________ _________________________________________ _________________________________________
  23. 23. nagaRAJU LowerPRIORITYHigher Smaller SIZE Larger Tasks:  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ……………….  ………………. ACTIVITY 4
  24. 24. USE TECHNOLOGY nagaRAJU Electronic format is easily portable and accessible from multiple devices. (Calendar, Google Keep, One Note, Jorte, Mobile Scheduler)
  25. 25. DELEGATION SKILLS nagaRAJU  Effectively transfer tasks from you to others  Progress from small to big; easy to complex  Know your people’s talents and delegate intelligently  Help others on your team learn new skills and grow  Follow up, motivate and offer suggestions and support  Trust others to be capable. Don’t underestimate their potential. Expect many pleasant surprises  Share what outcome is needed & expected standards  Define limits of authority (hiring, spending etc)  Agree on monitoring procedures, feedback and reports
  26. 26. KNOW WHAT TO DELETE nagaRAJU  Everything on your list cannot be done  Cut the unimportant tasks from the list  Focus on top priorities in order of importance  Dive in and be ready for anything  Don’t spend too much time on one priority  Enforce strict deadlines
  27. 27. BE ADAPTABLE nagaRAJU  Stay focused  Uncertainty is part of the game  Priorities may change midway (often when you least expect them to)  Deal with changing priorities  Decide if they are urgent or not
  28. 28. MAINTAIN TRANSPARENCY nagaRAJU  Use management software & cloud service  Share updated project schedule 24x7  Share the risks, issues and problems with stakeholders  Discuss problems honestly and realistically  Brainstorm solutions & share ideas  Appreciate and reward good contributions  Know what to keep confidential (finance, contracts)  Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know”  Don’t give ambiguous, uncertain answers  Remember entire team wants the same outcome
  29. 29. START SMALL, GO STEP BY STEP nagaRAJU Daunting tasks turn easy in instalments Gradually increase size, duration, difficulty Actions become habits Habits become character Schedule short, regular, frequent breaks (25 mt activity + 5 mt break; 2 mt small task immediate attention rule) Plan free time, plan fun
  30. 30. DON’T PROCRASTINATE nagaRAJU It won’t be easier tomorrow You won’t have more time tomorrow Split the task into smaller units Do a part of it today even if it is very small Keep smaller target leading to the bigger one
  31. 31. HOW LONG IS A MINUTE? nagaRAJU • Close eyes and bow heads • When you think 60 seconds has passed, raise your hand
  32. 32. TIME IS ELASTIC nagaRAJU 1. Clock time 2. Real time Time and space are relative  uniform  relative
  33. 33. OBSTACLES nagaRAJU Unclear Objectives Disorganization Lack of Planning Distractions Personal Commitments Inability to say NO Procrastination Indecisiveness Professional Obligations Stress & FatigueToo Many Things
  34. 34. STRATEGIES TO OVERCOME nagaRAJU Set Goals Use Waiting Time Learn to Say No Audit Your Time Prioritize Stay Organized One at a Time Celebrate Success Use a Device
  35. 35. nagaRAJU Send your comments to lionnagaraju@gmail.com This slideshow is available at www.slideshare.net/lionnagaraju www.authorstream.com/tag/lionnagaraju

Notes de l'éditeur

  • Do you frequently get to the end of your day and feel unsatisfied because you feel like you didn’t accomplish anything?
    Do you often feel overwhelmed by the amount of work you have, or have you missed an important deadline?
    Or have you ever forgotten to do something important?
    These are symptoms of lacking organizational skills needed to prioritize tasks with a proper to-do list. 
    To-do lists are key for efficiency because they list everything that you have to do, the most important tasks at the top, and the least important tasks at the bottom.

    Now, unless you truly spent the day staring at the wall, you probably accomplished more than you think you did. But maybe you didn’t get as much work done as you had hoped or the project that’s been hanging over your head is still hanging over your head.
    Long story short, you’ve got as much to do tomorrow as you did today.
    The key to both getting more done and feeling like you’re getting more done is planning.
    And to plan your day—or better, your week—nothing beats putting pen to paper and writing it down.
    Daily to-do lists and, for bigger projects, Action Plans, can make your days—and your accomplishments at the end of them—feel more concrete and can help you maximize your efficiency.
    A great time to plan your day is spending ten minutes planning at the end of a busy day to start tomorrow focused and energized.
    Take a tip from management guru Stephen Covey, author of “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” and don’t just prioritize what’s on your schedule. Schedule your priorities.
  • Planning and prioritization are two sides of the same coin.
    Planning is identifying the tasks required to achieve the desired goal on some scale .
    Prioritization is ensuring you are doing the right tasks in the right order, using your limited time and resources when demands are seemingly limitless.
    Planning and prioritization are two most important skills a manager can have. They ensure good use of your own efforts and those of your team.
    Every single day a manager is bombarded with demands with “ASAP” written all over them.
    Unending meeting requests, continuous daily reports, pressing operational issues and urgent project tasks and so on! If you get into that vicious cycle of trying to do everything, you’ll end up burned out, frustrated and unhappy.  
  • Set your goals and then develop an action plan to accomplish it.
    Planning is the foundation on which organizing, prioritizing, directing and controlling depend.

    Consciously choosing what to do, when to do, how to do and who will do a sequence of events to achieve an outcome.

    Not just for the ideal time scenario, also for the worst case.
    Make sure you have a buffer in your plan.
    A REACTIVE day signifies a FIREFIGHTING approach. Plan your day BEFORE you arrive at your office each day!
    Learn to focus on priorities
    Escape the danger of pushing off the calendar the critical tasks
  • Set your goals and then develop an action plan to accomplish it.
    Planning is the foundation on which organizing, prioritizing, directing and controlling depend.

    Consciously choosing what to do, when to do, how to do and who will do a sequence of events to achieve an outcome.

    Not just for the ideal time scenario, also for the worst case.
    Make sure you have a buffer in your plan.
    A REACTIVE day signifies a FIREFIGHTING approach. Plan your day BEFORE you arrive at your office each day!
    Learn to focus on priorities
    Escape the danger of pushing off the calendar the critical tasks
  • Set up :  Give each group a deck of playing cards.  Work as effectively as possible in your teams to complete the task. Each team is competing with other teams and the winning team is the one that finishes the task in the shortest possible time.
    Rules :  Lay out the cards exactly as outlined. 
    Cards must be in neat, tidy rows with no cards touching. 
    Complete this task in the fastest possible time – you are directly in competition with the other teams!
    You have 5 minutes to prepare your strategy and undertake any practice runs. 
    You may use any resources in the room to assist you in your task. 
    At the end of 5 minutes you will be asked to submit an estimated time in which you will complete the task. 
    You will then be asked to complete the task against the clock. Good Luck!!
    There will be 3 rounds to the game, the idea is that each team improves their time throughout the successive rounds of the game.
    The main learning point from this activity is to make the participants practice and experience the importance of planning and delegating/dividing  work among them  to properly manage their time and achieve the required task in the shortest time possible.
    What usually happens when running this activity is that participants don't usually come up with a good strategy
  • Pair work. Each pair narrates one experience from either professional experience or personal. Either from the present company or a previous one where you worked. Or an experience narrated to you by a friend or colleague.
    Planning keeps you on course in achieving your goals
  • Abraham Lincoln: “If I had 60 minutes to cut down a tree, I would spend 40 minutes sharpening the axe and 20 minutes cutting it down.”
    Dale Carnegie: “Two men were out chopping wood. One man worked hard all day, took no breaks, and only stopped briefly for lunch. The other chopper took several breaks during the day and a short nap at lunch. At the end of the day, the woodsman who had taken no breaks was quite disturbed to see that the other chopper had cut more wood than he had. He said, “I don’t understand. Every time I looked around, you were sitting down, yet you cut more wood than I did.” His companion asked, “Did you also notice that while I was sitting down, I was sharpening my axe?” Thus, Steven Covey calls planning “sharpening the axe.” You have to take time to make time.
    Planning is the difference between being REACTIVE and PROACTIVE. When you don’t plan, you end up responding to the day’s events as they occur.
  • Strategic Plans
    Apply to the entire organization.
    Establish the organization’s overall goals.
    Seek to position the organization in terms of its environment.
    Cover extended periods of time.
    Operational Plans
    Specify the details of how the overall goals are to be achieved.
    Cover short time period.
    Long-Term Plans
    Plans with time frames extending beyond three years
    Short-Term Plans
    Plans with time frames on one year or less
    Specific Plans
    Plans that are clearly defined and leave no room for interpretation
    Directional Plans
    Flexible plans that set out general guidelines, provide focus, yet allow discretion in implementation.
  • There are four different lists that you need to create for different purposes to enhance your organizational skills.
    First, you should create a master list on which you write down everything you can think of that you want to do some time in the future. This is the place where you capture every idea that comes to or every new task or responsibility that comes up. You can then prioritize tasks later.
    Second, you should have a monthly list that you make up at the end of the month for the month ahead. This may contain items transferred from your master list.
    Third, you should have a weekly list where you plan your entire week in advance. This is a list that is under construction as you go through the current week.
    Finally, you transfer items from your monthly and weekly lists onto your daily list. These are the specific activities that you are going to accomplish that day. As you work through the day, tick off the items on your to-do list as you complete them. This activity gives you a visual picture of accomplishment and improves your organizational skills. It generates a feeling of success and forward motion. 
    When something new comes up, add it to the list before you do it.
    By knowing how to prioritize tasks, you can increase your productivity and output by 25% or more from the first day you begin working.
    Improve your organizational skills and make out your to-do list the night before, at the end of the workday.
    Move everything that you have not yet accomplished onto your to-do list for the coming day and then add everything that you have to do the next day.
    When you make out your to-do list the evening or the night before, our mind works on your list all night long while you sleep.
  • Do – Determine from the list the things you think are most important to accomplish, and are things you should do yourself.
    Delegate – Remember that there are many people with skills, experience, and motivation to carry out a wide variety of tasks. Understands that real leaders do not try to accomplish everything themselves and recognizes that some things are better handled by others. Delegating not only frees up your time for other things, it ensures that resources are used wisely and that others who want to help are motivated and involved.
    Delay until another time – Some things can wait. The danger is delaying too many things until deadlines are near. The best policy here is to consider when things are due, how long it will take to accomplish them, and what your current workload will allow. It makes sense to delay things that are not due when you are “overburdened” and to accomplish them ahead of time when you can.
    Delete – If you recognize that some of your goals are not achievable or realistic, or that they are just not important, eliminate them.

  • All projects—especially large, complex projects—need clear priorities.
    Technical projects, no matter how well-planned, involve change orders, re-prioritization and the regular appearance of surprises. It’s just the natural order of things.
    Knowing how to prioritize work affects the success of your project, the engagement of your team, and your role as a leader.
  • “Every battle is won before it is fought” – Sun Tzu in the Art of War.
    Group similar tasks from your master list into a monthly / weekly / daily list. Your success tomorrow starts with proper planning tonight.

    Having a plan in place, with options, is critical to success.
    Be proactive, not reactive – use your independent will, imagination and self awareness.
    Be responsible for your own life, use your independent will to make your own choices and decisions.
    The earlier you rise the more time you have for productive positive work. Begin with a nutritious breakfast.
  • Urgent need not mean important!
    When urgent things act on you, you usually react to them. But you must be proactive rather than reactive to do the important, but not urgent things. Only by saying no to the unimportant can you say yes to the important. If you neglect prevention and planning, crises will own your life. If you plan daily instead of monthly and weekly, you will live in the urgent, where your “planning” will only prioritize your problems. Would a thirty-hour day solve your time problems? Not really. Soon your thirty-hour day would be just as full and leave you no less frustrated. You would still have a list of things you never got around to and a pile of unfinished books and projects. Do you have a “someday” pile at work? How about a “decide later” pile? Even if you did have more time, these would still exist because of habits you’ve developed. It’s more complex than not having enough time or not managing your time effectively. Instead, it becomes a lesson in managing priorities and being disciplined. There will always be more things to do than time to do them. Sometimes you must forego something you would like to do in favour of something that has to be done to accomplish your objectives. Don’t fail to plan. If you do, plan to fail.

    The great secret of success is to do fewer things but do more important things, and do more of them, do them longer, and get better at them. That’s it. Some of the most successful people that you know only do two or three things. They have everything else delegated, outsourced, or eliminated, and they focus on just two or three things.

    There are always more things to do than time to do them
    The dilemma is NOT a shortage of time—it is a problem of PRIORITIES.
    Imagine a “someday” / “later” pile at work
  • Must, Should, Could, Don’t
    High Risk, High Value / Low Risk, High Value / High Risk, Low Value / Low Risk, Low Value

    Take a look at the matrix and see where most of your day is spent.
    If you’re like most people, you probably spend quite a bit of time sitting in meetings, answering e-mail, filing, responding to crises—and very little time in Quadrant 4. However, it’s those activities from Quadrant 4, the Important/Not Urgent activities, that most enrich our business and personal lives.
    Take a moment to consider these two questions:
    What one thing could you do (that you aren’t doing now) that if you did on a regular basis, would make a tremendous positive difference in your personal life?
    What one thing in your business or professional life would bring similar results?
    Now, think back about the last week. Did you spend any time doing those things, whether it was “strategic planning” or “date with spouse”? If not, why not?
    Chances are you could have found the time for those things if you had scheduled them.
    In order to make time for these priorities, Covey suggests a weekly planning session, one that includes the “have-to-dos” as well as the Important/Not Urgent items. Your schedule should reflect what you value, whether it’s a daily workout, time visiting with friends and family, or brainstorming for new business opportunities.
    So, go ahead, schedule coffee with your co-worker. Make time for gardening. Create the space, and the opportunity, to explore your creativity, deepen your relationships, and expand your horizons.
    Now is the time to make your to-do lists work for you, not the other way around.
  • More time to work on your higher priority projects
    Be open to new ideas
    Identify what carries the highest value to your organization
    Recognize exactly which types of tasks have top priority (Client projects before internal work; setting up the new CEO’s computer before re-configuring the database; answering support tickets before writing training materials, and so on.)
    Estimate how many people are impacted (In general, the more people impacted, the higher the stakes.)
    Identify tasks that offer greater benefit (Client work not getting done has bigger ramifications more often than internal work.)
    Maximize the Most Important Tasks
    All of us have things we do that make the biggest difference. (For me it's actually sitting down and writing.)
    What two or three things contribute most to your success?
    What two or three things generate the most revenue?
    Eliminate all the extra "stuff" to the greatest extent possible so you reap the benefits of spending time

    Anything is manageable if prioritized effectively
  • The better the plan you have, even if as simple as creating a to-do list, the easier it is for you to overcome procrastination and get started, to eat that frog.
    One of your top goals at work should be for you to prioritize tasks by using your organizational skills to get the highest possible return on your investment of mental, emotional and physical energy.
    The good news is that every minute spent planning saves as many as ten minutes in execution.
    It only takes about ten or twelve minutes for you to prioritize tasks by planning out your day and create a to-do list.
    This small investment of time will save you at least two hours (100-120 minutes) in wasted time and diffused effort throughout the day.
  • Say you decided you should cold-call 20 new prospects every day.
    Great idea -- but sounds daunting. Sounds really hard. Sounds almost impossible.
    Instead, start small.
    You can call two people a day, right?
    That sounds easy. That you will do.
    Then, in time, it will feel comfortable to increase the number. Whenever you want to create a new habit, start small so you will actually start -- and stick with it through that tough early time when habits are hard to form.

    Make Temptations Hard to Reach
    The pain in the butt technique
    When something is hard to do, you'll do less of it.
    Store sodas in the refrigerator and keep bottles of water on your desk.
    Put the TV remote in an upstairs closet.
    Shut down your browser so it's harder to check out TMZ.
    Use a "productivity" laptop that intentionally doesn't have a browser or email
    Leave your phone behind, and move to a conference room to get stuff done.
    Convenience is the mother of distraction, so make it a pain in the butt to satisfy your temptations.
  • Build in Frequent Breaks
    Small, frequent breaks are a great way to refresh and recharge.
    Work on one task for 25 minutes and then take a five-minute break. (To time yourself, use a kitchen timer or your phone.)
    The key to not burning out is to not let burnout sneak up on you. Scheduling regular short breaks ensures that won't happen.

    Free time shouldn't just happen by accident.
    Plan your free time. Plan activities. Plan fun things to do.
    You will enjoy the planning, the anticipation and have more fun.
    You will be happier, the more motivated and more productive.

    Follow the 2-Minute Rule
    When a task takes less than two minutes, don't schedule it.
    Don't set it aside for later, don't set a reminder.
    Just take care of it. Now.
  • More planning time = greater efficiency
    Better prioritization = Faster and better job performance
    Write lists of what you need to do
    Challenge yourself, allocate less time for higher energy levels
    Chunk Housekeeping Tasks, don’t sprinkle them