This Time Management Matrix is a powerful productivity and time management tool. It displays four quadrants to determine the tasks you need to do and to decide what should or should not be made a priority.
This technique was first used by Former US President Eisenhower who used it to organize his tasks. It was Dr Covey, author bestseller “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, who popularized it. Known until then...
Judging whether activities are urgent, important, both or neither, is a “must-have” skill in our increasingly busy lives. The Urgent/Important Matrix is a powerful productivity and time management tool that will help you avoid spending all your time on non-important tasks. It displays four quadrants to determine the tasks you need to do and to decide what should or should not be made a priority.
Using this technique aks to understand the difference between urgent and important tasks :
Urgent tasks need a quick reaction, and we generally have to stop what we’re doing to work on them instead.
Important tasks lead us towards our overall achievement of your goals, whether these are professional or personal. These key actions often require planning, organization and initiative.
The Urgent/important Matrix can be used in different ways, but we recommend to follow certain steps that make the process more efficient:
Make a list
First make a list all the activities, tasks and projects that you have on your agenda right now. Write them all, including the ones that might seem insignificant or unimportant at the time being. Use the space on the left of the matrix to place your sticky notes in any order.
Order by importance
Once you’ve finished your list, try to order all these activities, tasks and projects in terms of their importance. This should reflect how these tasks help you or your team achieving your goals and objectives. Do not think in terms of urgency at this stage.
Evaluate level of urgency
Once you've assigned the importance to the activities, you can evaluate the level of urgency. At this stage, you can place them in the matrix.
Plan your strategy
Once you’ve placed all the elements on the matrix, you can start planning your strategy.
TIPS ON THE STRATEGY
Urgent and Important activities
Urgent and Important activities can be foreseen or not. Try to avoid situations when you have to complete an important activity last minute because you didn’t plan ahead or procrastinated. On the other hand, certain unforeseen events cannot be avoided and you should try to adapt when this happens. You can, for example, push back other less urgent or important tasks when these crisis occur.
Urgent and Not Important activities
Urgent and Not Important activities stop you achieving your goals and completing your scheduled work. Ask yourself whether you can reschedule or delegate.
Not Urgent, but Important activities
Not Urgent, but Important activities help you achieve your goals and complete important work. Make time for these and make sure they don’t become urgent. Plan for unforeseen problems or activities so that you stay in line with your objectives.
Not Urgent and Not Important activities
Not Urgent and Not Important activities are distractions that make you waste your time. Simply cancel them when you can. When asked by other people, try saying no politely.