Need a First Quarter Reset? Try this Priority Matrix

A simple 4 box grid can help you get your life back (or at least get you feeling more organized!)

Tug of War. The unraveling of string. The toilet paper spinning off the roll and all the way out of the stall.

The way it feels when you’re desperately holding onto the halter of a surly calf and she’s going… going…going…gone!

That is how I describe the Q1 (aka First Quarter) of the year. It comes at you fast and before you know it, it’s gone!
Can I get a ‘Heck Yeah’ out there, or is it just me?

If you agreed with my assessment of the fleeting first quarter, you may be feeling – like me – in need of a strategy to pull it back under control and get a game plan. Enter my ACT Priority Matrix tool! This simple concept is just four boxes on a piece of paper but it can really help you Marie Kondo your career and professional life so give it a try. The image and my basic instructions follow. Let us know how you liked it and how you applied it in your business and life!

ACT Like a Pro Out There!


Priority 1, Top Left:
These items are Priority 1 because they are win-wins. These are things that are going well and offer both high value to members and are low maintenance for you or other staff. Strive to get as much of your workload into this box.

Priority 2, Bottom Left:
These are items that are low maintenance, but are also low in value to members. They are Priority 2 because of the fact that they don’t take a lot of work or time away from Priority 1. Examples of Priority 2 may be essential tasks that members don’t see behind the scenes or they may be things that could move into Priority 1 with the correct updates. Some of these things are diamonds in the rough.

Priority 3, Top Right:
Items that are Priority 3 are both high maintenance and high value making them seem immediate, super important, and all-consuming. But, they remain a third priority because they involve so much work that they are often frustrating. These are items that may raise a perpetual question of ’should we be doing this?’ and ‘how can we make this better?’. That’s the sweet spot of Priority 3 – the chance to revise the tasks, processes, or anything else in order to move them over to Priority 1. Priority 3’s present an opportunity to change.

Priority 4, Bottom Right:
Priority 4 items are the lowest priority for a reason; they are low value and high maintenance. Ugh! These are often considered (whether you want to admit it or not) resource wastes because they can. wear out your staff and lead to burnout, complacency, or boredom. Look for anything that accompanies the words ‘but we’ve always done it that way’ and you might see a sneaky Priority 4. Priority 4 items often should be eliminated all together or very carefully examined for means of comprehensive improvement.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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