How to prioritize, even when you have different interests
Read why it can be detrimental to "negotiate" what to prioritize, and how criteria can make it easier and more pleasant to collaborate on prioritization.
If you have been involved in prioritization within a group, you may have experienced that it sometimes turns into a negotiation, and the participants struggle to reach an agreement.
One of the reasons for this can be that different "interests" are at the center of the discussion. It is inherently challenging to agree on whether marketing is more important than logistics or if employee well-being outweighs investing in new production machinery.
The negotiation-based method not only makes it difficult to choose but also has some negative consequences:
Firstly, it shifts focus away from the overall value for the "company" as a whole.
Secondly, it can reinforce the general silo mentality within the organization.
And thirdly, the decisions may not always seem logical to those who are responsible for executing the tasks.
If you want to involve a group with different interests in prioritization, there are two things you should do:
Firstly, ensure that you start by agreeing on the criteria for prioritization BEFORE discussing the options. You will likely find it much easier to reach consensus on the criteria than on individual initiatives.
The next thing you need to ensure is that participants evaluate all initiatives individually and independently of each other. This will provide you with a shared and transparent picture where everyone has been heard, and the harmful dynamics of negotiation are eliminated. It makes collaboration on prioritization easier and more pleasant for the group, and ensures that the group focuses on what creates the most value for the company.
Benelizer's cloud solution makes it easy for you to work with criteria and individual and independent assessments. You can also learn more about the method in one of our master classes or address a specific prioritization challenge in a workshop.
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