Managing Conflicting Priorities – A Study

Managing Conflicting Priorities - A Study


Often professionals have to face situations when they have to submit more than one project within the same timeframe. She can either stay awake overnight to complete all the tasks or she can keep one project to be completed urgently, and keep the rest for later completion. However, approaching a client to say that her work is less urgent than another one is difficult. Moreover, completing all the projects in the given time also leads to stress. In this article, we will discuss about managing conflicting priorities to increase personal effectiveness.


  • When a professional puts all her efforts to complete all the work, it becomes multitasking, which again leads to poor work quality and late delivery of task. This results in disappointment among people who depend on her and she gets lesser opportunities in future.
  • The problem of conflicting priorities comes into action when a professional is very good at her work and is committed to it. The expectations and demands of superiors as well as colleagues increase. In the process, the professional makes mistakes and has to do the work again. This kills a lot of time.

Prioritizing Work

Mentioned below are a few techniques that make sure that work prioritization is practiced and everyone is kept satisfied.

# Take control of the activities

  • She should try to avoid procrastinating her tasks.
  • She should have complete control of her workplace.
  • She must avoid interruptions in office.
  • She should have an efficient filing system which is easy to use.
  • She can find out the old practices that claim her time and eliminate them.
  • She should have a clear mind before sitting down at her desk.

# Go after the priorities

  • She should make maximum utilization of resources that provide excellent service
  • She should be able to understand the technique of making her priorities, the priority of others.
  • She should not compromise on the quality of her service even the work pressure is overwhelming.
  • She should be able to understand the efficiency of each team member and recognize the projects that she can delegate to them.
  • She should reduce the time she spends in meetings and conferences.

# Combine between tasks and deadlines

  • She should learn about proper planning and organize methods that are guaranteed to increase productivity.
  • She should complete her work within the stipulated time period and not lose control over her mind.
  • She should handle high pressure work load even when it gets more demanding.
  • She should have an eye for the hidden shortcuts in the assignments she handles, so that quality is not much compromised.

# Deal confidently with colliding demands

  • She should try to impede projects from colliding with each other.
  • She should learn about techniques that save both labor and time.
  • She should have the guts to say ‘no’ when necessary.
  • She should be aware of the techniques that help her satisfy more than one superior.

# Maintain strong positive relationship at workplace

  • She should find out solutions to colliding demands with a system that earns respect as well as avoids making clients or superiors irate.
  • She should learn about the correct technique to ask for what she needs and make sure that no one is annoyed by her approach.
  • She should deal with a superior with less experience and not get stressed.
  • She should arm herself with techniques that help her to fall back on something when she commits errors.
  • She should measure the stress level on exact terms and apply quick ways to decrease stress.

# Create strong defenses

  • She should get a checklist to ensure balance in her life.
  • She should be aware of the techniques to get rid of tiredness and sickness.
  • She should try to reduce burnout and get rid of stress.
  • She should know how to develop personal goals, so that personal priorities get importance.
  • She should decrease stress with a system of prioritizing that keeps her in control.
  • She should invest and defuse her unique pressure to perform properly.

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Establish Time Goals

  • When a professional has to handle many projects she should create proper time schedule, so that she can give priority to each project. For instance, if she has prioritized working for a project on Monday and another client wants her to do their task on that day; she should say that she has set aside Wednesday for them. This way, she can make sure that the client with whom she is currently speaking does not burden her with more work on other days.
  • The main idea is that multitasking is not a good idea when a professional has to deal with many projects. Repeated research has proved that the more a professional moves from one place to another and the more she tries to do many things together, the less efficaciousness she can show. When she creates a particular time schedule for working on a specific assignment, she can render complete focus to the project and complete it in lesser than the stipulated time.
  • If, while doing one project she suddenly remembers about something she missed in the other, she should make a note of that.

Ask Appropriate Questions

  • Once the goals are clear and a time schedule is created for separate projects, she should understand that she has to think about other projects, needs of others and new opportunities. She can ask the following questions to herself.
  • She should ask if the urgency in work is for her or for someone else.
  • She should ask if the project she is about to be handed over serves any of her purposes and objectives. If it does, she should ask which objective it serves.
  • She should find answer to the fact that by doing the project she would move towards something or move away from something.

To Sum Up

From the above article, it can be deduced that conflicting priorities come up when an employee shoes efficiency at workplace. She can use various techniques to come over the problem, but not use multitasking.

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