How I reduced my work list by more than 50%

Source : Unsplash

You must be having a lot of tasks on your plate for the day. Few tasks are allocated by your manager, few others are personal and rest are habitual. When you start your day, your energy level is at peak but at the dawn, you feel like you’re drained.

I was on the same page like you before I came across task decision matrix. After following this for a week, I realized I could actually be 10x more productive than I was before. Because whenever I was asked to do any work tagged as “urgent”, I considered it to be important and tried to finish it right away.

But the truth is one should not confuse between “What is Important” and “What is Urgent”.

Let me show you one of my typical task schedule from my typical days at Vibrant :

2 urgent and important tasks (to be done immediately) :

a) Follow up with the potential lead and set up a call for the brief pitch (This could result in conversion and this could add $3000 in our sales pipeline)

b) Address a customer, who has posted some issue with our product on Twitter (This is brand retention task and hence important as well as urgent)

2 important but not urgent tasks (to schedule later) :

c) Create an editorial calendar for this month

d) Research on project management tools

2 urgent but not important tasks (to delegate ) :

e) Fix the layout of the new blog, which has to go live today

f) Increase Instagram followers for the week

3 neither urgent nor important tasks (to eliminate ) :

g) Checking facebook

h) Sorting through junk email

i) Watching YouTube

Without the decision matrix, I would have done the above in this order :

g (because I love scrolling down Facebook)> e (because it is easier to do) > d (because I might wish to go slow for the work) > h (because I would have realized that I am receiving too many junk emails ) > f (because Instagram would let me explore more relevant profiles) > i ( I might would like to distract myself from the unproductive day) > c ( At the end, because I would be better to do at the end of the day)

The above work pattern would have exhausted me and probably would have taken a much longer time to focus on the next task.

But, the task decision matrix did magic for me. With this procedure, I actually did the same in the following way :

  1. a & b were urgent and important, so I wrapped up immediately. Result? Had set up the call for Friday afternoon & addressed the Twitter issue immediately. < Large impact >
  2. c & d were important but not urgent. These both tasks would have taken longer time and the same would have required focus. So, I scheduled it for 2–5 pm (my most effective focused work timing). < Focused work >
  3. e & f were urgent but not important. That means, the same tasks could be done by anybody else and because these both were urgent, I had to make sure it is done. So, I delegated it to the next most skilled person for the task. Result? I was not required for this work, but still it was done on time. Better to have lesser on your plate. < Effective >
  4. g, h and i were neither urgent, nor important. So, I completely eliminated it from the day work. Result? I was able to save my 1.5 hours of the day. < Time saver>

This work technique saved my 1.5 hours, transformed my 9 tasks to 4 tasks on my plate, reducing my tasks by more than 50%.

I give credit to Vibrant Work App (a single productivity mobile work app for all the core activities) to have this as one of the seamless features. This mobile app enables me to apply this decision matrix quickly and sort out my priorities for the day. It also lets me to collaborate effectively with my entire team and maintain transparency at work. How about you also trying it out?

Thanks for reading, if this was valuable to you, I’d be honored if you join us for the October launch and help us in building a Happy Work Culture for you!