The prioritization systems of the past do not apply in today's world. In this video, Dave Crenshaw explains the current challenges to time management and the importance of replacing the urgent and important mindset with the time value mindset.
- If you've learned about prioritization in the past, what I'm about to share with you will probably be very different. It may feel a bit radical. So, I need to provide some context. The majority of prioritization systems are based on a variation of the Eisenhower Decision Matrix. This was first introduced by former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Later, it was popularized by the brilliant leadership and time management expert Stephen R. Covey. It's based upon a matrix with four quadrants in which you decide what to do based upon what's urgent or important.
We won't be using that matrix. Why? Well, from the 1950s through the 1990s this model was practical and useful, however, with the deepest respect to my time management forebearers, it needs an update and an upgrade. Consider what is different about our lives today in comparison, to say, 1988? From a time management perspective, the two differences can be summed up as interruptions and speed.
You can now use a small handheld device to reach out to anyone around the world at any time. Individually, we can use these same devices to look up anything that we want to learn about including this course. We live in an age of endless interruptions and unlimited opportunities. Yet, so few of us have learned how to prioritize and protect ourselves from these endless interruptions and unlimited opportunities. Why? Because they happen so fast.
As much as I hate the thought, I'm guessing about half of you are multitasking on me as I share this message with you. You know who you are. Every time we switch attention from one device to another device, or from one thought to another, we incur a cost. If we could get the world around us to slow down and stop interrupting us, then the Eisenhower Decision-making Matrix just might work. But that's not realistic for most people.
What is realistic is creating a filter and a funnel for all the tasks and attention-grabbing opportunities that are presented to us. Let's say you could automatically set up a filter, a firewall for your attention, if you will. Then, you could distill all of these ideas and opportunities down to what is most valuable. Value is everything. If you can increase the value of your time, then, bluntly speaking, it allows you to make more money while spending less time working.
If you can make the same amount of money next year while working 25% less hours, then you've taken considerable control over your time. You'll also give yourself more freedom to live the kind of life that you want to live. You can spend more time with the people that you care about. And you can pursue even more valuable opportunities. So, in summary what we're going to do is replace the urgent and important mindset with the mindset of what is most valuable.
- Determine which factors influence your ability to prioritize.
- Analyze and prioritize activities based on their value.
- Apply the time-value prioritization funnel to meaningfully order your tasks.