Thursday, May 26, 2016

How Do You Prioritize?

It's something I didn't even think I could have trouble with, yet I do.

Welcome. Maybe we'll be able to help each other out and come up with some great methods on how to prioritize more efficiently.

I often think prioritizing well is synonymous with being organized. Or one is the result of the other. I've come to realize that it's not exactly true sometimes.

At work, what is priority? Whatever your boss tells you to get done first? That seems like that's the easy answer. What if your boss is not around? You have a handful of tasks that need to get done, but which one gets done first?

A bit of a loaded question, don't you think?

Which tasks are more customer sensitive? Which one will take longer? Who is dependent on you getting the work done? So many different cases where you have to truly measure which ones need to be on the top of your list.

I don't even know what goes on in my brain when it comes to prioritization. I tend to write things down in an order of what to get done, but I barely even follow the order. The order itself doesn't even have a good reasoning as to why it's set up that way. That's probably why I feel less organized than I normally would.

Last month wasn't a good month for me. There were a lot of tasks that were in the queue, but a lot of unexpected events came up and it threw the priorities into a kind of funk. Once that was all said and done, I felt lost and behind in work. I obviously did not adapt well to unexpected events. Learning experience I guess.

If I can't prioritize myself at work, I will tend to lean on someone for advice before I start to give myself a panic attack over nothing. Do the fun stuff first. Get to the less fun stuff later, if it's not on a strict deadline. I think talking it over with someone else who understands the frustration can ease the potential pain and anxiety. I haven't had to do with much. Well, just once. I survive with the minor disorganization.

Let's not just talk about work. What about life? What is on the top of our lists? Different for every stage of life, I would assume. Post-college would be the loans, rent, first job, and how to juggle your social life, all at the same time. Family would be, well, family. Raising kids to the best of your abilities, keeping your home and marriage intact for the greater good, stuff like that.

Me? Time seems to be always a factor. How much can I cram in before I go to bed? I have to fit a workout in, reading a book, watching a movie/tv show, play a video game, all the while trying to realize that I am an adult and I have bills to pay and a car to make sure it survives for x amount of years. The social part of life is nonexistent, but that's a story for another day. Fitting your friends in is hard when most are miles away, probably forgetting about you. Can't expect to make others a priority when you're not one of theirs. Well, now I'm diverging.

My brain actually hurts right now. How is it people are so organized? Their priorities seem to be in a good order. I think I need like 76 naps right now. Here's to another entry that doesn't seem to make sense...

Sunday, May 8, 2016

A Series of Notes Summarizing... Learning Agile by Andrew Stellman & Jennifer Greene

This one took a while, but I finally was able to finish the next installment of my Series of Notes. It's interesting to learn about the different processes that software teams use in order to deliver working software. Being able to read along and compare it to what teams in my company do is certainly a great learning experience.

My honest opinion? This book wasn't exactly the greatest read, but it was easy to follow and provided enough real world applications in order to help guide the reader to a better understanding of the various agile processes and practices that are utilized today.

Feel free to have a look at the notes if you are interested in reading this book.