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Ero Stefano
Ero Stefano

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How to prioritize your tasks

Imagine you are hero with some amazing superpowers. Because of bad luck you get yourself surrounded by some bad guys who also have superpowers. Although you are hero you cannot take endless damage. At some point you are going to fall like anyone else. This means you need a strategy to finish them. What do you do to minimize the damage you could get? You need to finish one after another!

This sounds easy but the big question is: In which order should you finish them? Yes, this is very important.

BTW: running away is the best solution

Enough heroes, back to business

You have the following two tasks in your backlog.

Add new products in web shop
Your customers know you have some brand new products and want to buy them. While the products are missing in your web shop your customers cannot buy them.

You miss profit!

Cost of delay: 200 dollars per day
Size         : 2 days effort

Automate refunds
Although your products are amazing some customers want a refund. The refunds are so annoying and take pretty much time. Time is money. You lose time, you lose money.

This takes you extra effort!

Cost of delay: 150 dollars per day
Size         : 3 days effort

Calculate the priority

We know the cost of delay and size of each task. How can we compare them? Simple, by this superhero formula.

Cost of delay : Size = Weight

Add new products in web shop

200 : 2 = 100

Automate refunds

150 : 3 = 50

Compared to weight we know now that the missing products in the web shop are heavier than the missing automation of refunds.

100 > 50

In short them you should first add the new products and then automate the refunds.


Best case
We trust our calculated priority and use it.

Day 1: 200 + 150 = 350
Day 2: 200 + 150 = 350
Day 3: 150
Day 4: 150
Day 5: 150

Total costs over these five days: 1150 dollars

Worst case
Assuming we would not care about the calculated priority and we completely invert it.

Day 1: 200 + 150 = 350
Day 2: 200 + 150 = 350
Day 3: 200 + 150 = 350
Day 4: 200
Day 5: 200

Total costs over these five days: 1450 dollars

Only by prioritizing those tasks we would save up to 300 dollars. This is about 26%.

BTW: This is the reason all those product owner get some bonus...

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