The Urgent-Important Matrix
Also known as the Eisenhower Matrix this tools is a simple 2×2 matrix ideally suited to daily decision making of unplanned tasks. Tasks that just popup, or are part of a flood of things than need to be done.
“What is important is seldom urgent,” Dwight D. Eisenhower liked to say, “and what is urgent is seldom important.”
The premise is simple – a task can be prioritised (and a decision made) based on it’s Urgency and Importance. This forms a matrix, with each quadrant detailing how to act next.
- Urgent and Important – DO immediately
- Important, Not Urgent – PLAN to do later
- Urgent, Not Important – DELEGATE to someone else
- Not Urgent, Not Important – ELIMINATE
This tool helps prioritise tasks that are not typically part of an Action Plan (which is a more controlled set of actions), but could be used in times when you Action Plan needs to be re-shuffled.
This tool is more suited to Personal Productivity, as it helps you address the Urgency/Importance of tasks there-and-then.