s Your Team Becoming Dysfunctional?
Blog | 06.15.2012

Urgent versus Important for Project Managers

Often, as managers, we find ourselves moving from one urgent task to another, and seemingly hard pressed for enough time. This adds a lot of avoidable stress to our life. This is not a new phenomenon – in most jobs, lack of planning eventually leads to crisis situations. We get busy in mitigating the impact, and as a result the important tasks begin to get neglected, leading to delays and future crisis.

This online article provides a good perspective on why most of a manager’s time should go into what’s important but not urgent:  Time Management for Managers: Urgent Vs Important

Project Managers are responsible for balancing the work and responsibilities done by the team within a time limit for successful completion of a project. Project management is about a series of inter-linked tasks, and delays in one item can create a cascading series of problems. Hence proper planning and effective tracking are key ingredients for success.

Project Effort on different modules and tasks has to be estimated and managed to perfection. The successful project managers are able to invest time on planning, estimation and tracking. The secret is to cut distractions at work on tactical issues, and do the important things to prevent what we call as fires (or urgent issues). For example, if you have to spell out a project plan decision in your next monthly meeting, do enough ground work in advance so that it is well thought out, and share it with other stakeholders for their inputs. Doing it at the last minute, and having people give numerous suggestions in the meeting, means that it is going to take much more time to complete and be accepted. By then it has fallen in the urgent category.

See if you can cut down on emails that you send or receive. Do you need to be copied on the day to day details of what’s happening, and are all those reports needed? If not, take steps to reduce email overload in your group.

Sapience will help enhance your work focus and ensure that you spend time in the required areas. Our software generates automated facts about your time atwork. You can then make the necessary adjustment to the activity mix, so you focus more on the important rather than the mundane. Write to us at  sales@sapienceanalytics.com and find out how Sapience can transform your own productivity at work, as well as that of your team.