The Question Queen

Weighing Prioritization Drivers; Choosing the projects of highest impact to your strategic goals.

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” ~ Peter F. Drucker    

      Analysis paralysis is a struggle all decision-makers in organizations can relate to. When so many project requests come in, how do they decide what to say yes to and what to devote an organizations’ limited resources to?  In our last post, we went over the concept of prioritization drivers. Prioritization drivers are target outcomes that align with your organizations overarching strategic objectives. However, it’s important to understand how these goals relate to one another in value and impact. Defining the weight of your drivers and aligning on priorities is a great place to start.  

      Weigh the drivers based on the short and long-term needs of your organization keeping in mind that these weights may change as your business priorities change to meet the needs of changing markets. Business goals are not all equally important – defining the weight allows you to quantify the differences. After you define the weight of your drivers, you are better able to score your list of projects against your weighted drivers completing an analysis of each potential project to understand the impact on your organization's objectives.  

     Using a simple prioritization matrix is one of our favorite ways at Echo to accomplish this. A prioritization matrix is a tool where you create a set of drivers with assigned weights and use them to score your projects. This provides decision-makers with the data they need to confidently decide what projects provide the highest impact on their organization's strategic goals.   

     Example Prioritization Matrix:

     Weighing drivers is also a great tool to increase transparency in an organization. By quantifying the strategic value, you are communicating what the priorities are and why certain projects and initiatives align with your goals over others. Everyone wants to know that they are working on projects that are most valuable to an organization’s goals. This communication method is great to support strategic alignment and buy-in for new initiatives.  

     What are the drivers that are more heavily weighted in your organization? Are the projects and initiatives that your organization chooses aligned with the strategic goals? Each organization will have its own unique drivers and unique weights for each – weighting drivers will allow you to decide which items hold priority and the value of pursuing a project or initiative allowing better alignment of priorities and timelines.