A Bigger Picture
So far, we have discussed prioritizing tasks within a single project. Let us focus on the bigger picture now. No one starts a business without an objective. To achieve your business objective, it is imperative to set periodic goals to analyze whether you are going in the right path. This is very important if you are the business owner or in a program manager position where you handle a program consisting of multiple projects. Remember, each project will have multiple activities, which need proper planning while prioritizing.Create a periodic checklist (weekly or monthly) to meet the overall program and business objectives. Depending on the periodic checklist you have created, plan the action items at the beginning of the week or month.
The uncertainty level in project activities becomes high if success depends on too many factors like people, time, tasks, skills and client relationship. At times, a project may not be critical but you will be in a position to develop a relationship with a new client. There could be another project for an existing client which needs your immediate attention. You must work hard and sacrifice many things to achieve satisfaction from an existing client. Moving this project to the backseat will lead you to loose the long term relationship built through hard work.
How will you prioritize tasks in this situation? The client relationship should be used as a key element in emphasizing the task. Depending on the relationship you have built with the existing client, you may ask for a deadline extension. Again, you will need to consider the criticality level of the deliverables in both the projects. Remember, your clients are also accountable to their customers. They are highly depending on the delivery of your product or service to achieve success in their business.