Getting Things Done: How I Set Priorities

How do you decide what to do next? Should you write a blog post? Answer emails in your inbox? Make several sales calls? Spend time on Twitter? Or should you call a team meeting to discuss a customer problem?

Successful people are successful in part because they are good at setting priorities. And while there are many different ways to set priorities, I wanted to share how I set my own priorities – and priorities for the team at crowdSPRING.

How do you set YOUR priorities?

  • Ivan Walsh

    Hi Ross.
    For me, it’s all about planning. And planning, by extension, is decision-making.
    1. At the end of every business day, I review what I’ve done. Takes 5 min. What did I forget to do? This goes to the top of next day’s schedule.
    2. I get up around 6am to get a head start and beat the kids getting up.
    3. I ignore the emails for 1 hour. Nothing is that urgent.
    4. I plan my day – what is critical goes first, then what I need to do and the rest can wait
    5. When all of this is done, I check emails, watch cats doing ninja tricks and what not
    6. I have a super quick review at 11.45 before lunch
    7. I have a super quick review at 2.45 to make sure I’m still on track.
    All this is done on my pad. Writing it down seems to make it more permanent. I like to cross things off when I’ve conquered a task!
    Small rewards as we go along. Nothing fancy.
    Closing my inbox during the work day was/is the biggest way to save time. And, of course, turn off the phone.


  • Ross

    Ivan – very thorough process. I’m not sure I could close my inbox during the work day for the entire day (or turn the phone off), but I do my best to stay away from the inbox for 2 hours at a time (I don’t always manage to do that) so that I could focus. Thanks for sharing what you do.

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