Prioritizing/Categorizing Daily Tasks Quickly and Effectively

If you're like me, your Wrike workspace can get out of control really fast. Has anyone found a good way to prioritize and categorize tasks in such a way that it makes the workspace visually easier to navigate?

For example, I tried using Covey's Prioritization Matrix to help (Tasks are 1. Urgent and Important, 2. Not Urgent but Important, 3. Urgent and Not Important, 4. Not Urgent and Not Important). I set up a priority custom field and used these 4 values in a drop down list. However, when I started categorizing tasks, I realized that most things fell under "Not Urgent but Important." It's very difficult for me to say something I have to do at work is not important--isn't it all?! 

I've also tried to use task statuses in this way. I set up a custom workflow with the statuses Priority, In Progress, Waiting on Someone, Waiting on Approval, Maybe Today, Completed. I liked this because it gave me a clear visual on what I HAD to get done today, where I was stalled, what I could possibly get to if I had time, etc. But I found that constantly switching task statuses was time consuming, difficult to maintain and sometimes interfered with another custom workflow. I run into the same issue when trying to multi-tag tasks to a folder.

Has anyone found a great way to do this with their daily/weekly tasks? I'd love some screenshots and examples of how you use this! 

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I dont really find setting importance or urgency to work because most of my team would always think their needs are most important lol.  We have a shared dashboard so every user has the same look.  Organized by what is on your plate today, what is due this week, backlogged / non time critical, incoming requests so the entire company has visibility to any that sit too long and tasks I sent to others.

 

The good news is no one wants to be the oldest task on the incoming request or the entire company sees you sitting on it :)

 

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Thanks for sharing, Ivan! I love seeing screenshots of other user dashboards. 

I guess the need for this comes down to the nature of the company and job. We are a marketing department for a large credit union and a lot of the tasks that come in are widely varied and don't necessarily have a set deadline. It's really easy for us to get overloaded with tasks that vary in priority and importance. (When I say priority and importance I'm always talking in terms of the credit union's goals, not my own wants.)

So I come in every day with tasks that must get done that day, sure, but once I'm done with those, where do I start? Most of the time, I go through my Wrike task list and write the next things I want to tackle down in my notebook. Just seems like there must be a better way. 

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Anna,

I get that, that is a struggle for us too but we just encourage people to self manage and set their own deadlines.  My personal opinion is when people set their own deadlines they are more likely to get it all done vs just try to prioritize without date help.

But, that doesnt work for everyone.

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When you have 40, 50, 100 or more tasks, I have found that it can be helpful (depending on your specifics) to have the ability to not only see tasks in "smart" list widgets (e.g. all the tasks matching and sorted by various criteria) - but you ALSO need the ability to select from those which you personally know you need to work on next, in order to have a smaller, more manageable set of "today's stuff", based on some human judgement, not just from task statuses/dates/etc. Working down a really looooong task list based solely on due date or "Importance" etc can often be too simple and too rigid. As an example, let's say you know that TaskA is VERY important, but requires 40 hours of work, and you don't want to ignore TaskB and TaskC - each of which are less important, but could be completed in a few minutes - to wait on Task A to be completed.  We all face situations like this. Prioritization can often be too complex for "smart" lists.

I have been experimenting - and having good success - with creating special folders (to which other users have just "READ ONLY" access) which I use only for the purpose of being able to create some manually controlled widgets in dashboards. In other words, my tasks don't go into these "special folders".  These folders are just for tagging. Using this method, I can drag and drop tasks from my date-based widgets into my "Action Items" widget (a widget in which tasks assigned to me with ANY status appear and which are tagged to a folder named "SLH!" which is just my initials and a "!").

I work from my "Action Items" list, not from the other widgets. The Action Items list is sorted based on priority, not by date, so as needed I can reorder the tasks up and down in it. And I sometimes leave tasks in there that are Completed or Deferred, etc. because this dashboard is ALSO what is shared with my supervisor and what we review weekly. It's easy to go over what I'm working on and the priority of each item, and what has recently been completed, etc. So I never really need to pull together a "Status/Update" report.

I'll mention also that I have a task for each of my current performance goals, which are in their own widget, tagged with a "SLH-PerfGoal" folder. You can create more of theses, for special projects, or whatever. Here's a screenshot of my current favorite dashboard for my day-to-day work:

Scott Henderson Arizona Community Foundation azfoundation.org

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