Impact vs. Effort Matrix

Use the Impact vs. Effort Matrix to evaluate potential solutions or projects by organizing them according to their impact and the effort it would take to implement them.
The Impact vs. Effort Matrix answers the following questions.
  • Which activities should we focus on? Which activities can we ignore?
  • Which activities will take longer, but are still worth doing?
  • Where should we allocate time and resources?

How-to

  1. As a group, define a clear objective.
  2. Identify all the activities required to meet the objective.
  3. Assess the impact (value) and effort (time, money, and resources) of each activity.
  4. Based on your assessment, enter each activity into the appropriate quadrant.
    • Major Projects: Activities that require much effort but have high-impact results. Focus on these activities only if you are committed to the difficult work involved.
    • Quick Wins: Activities that require little effort and have high-impact results. Focus on these activities first because they yield the best return on investment.
    • Time Wasters: Activities that require much effort and have low-impact results. Do not focus on these activities because the effort outweighs the impact.
    • Fill Ins: Activities that require little effort but have low-impact results. Focus on these activities only after you complete activities that yield high-impact results.

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