After the brainstorming session using the WHY + HOW = WHAT formula, you might find yourself with a list of ideas and interesting projects you want to work on.
In order to be productive and see projects through, it is important you choose one idea at a time to work on before moving to the others. The process of choosing an idea can be difficult, especially is you are excited about several.
I recommend using the Idea Rating Method (IRM) to visualise and (unconsciously) decide on the idea better suited for you in this moment.
Download the Idea Rating Method Template and work your way through the tutorial bellow while filling in your own criteria and values.
Here is how my assessment looked like: the Hackathon idea scored the highest, therefore it is what I am focusing on. Now let’s break it down.
In this method, the criteria represents those characteristics that are interesting for you in a project. They can be set based on your likes/dislikes (e.g. Should involve working with kids), on a time frame (e.g. Should be executed in 6 months) or even on a skill set (e.g. Should be done by Project Management methodology).
Imagine you ideal project and write down what would make it interesting for you and you will have your list of criteria.
The Relative Value
Now that you have your list, think about how important is every item to you on a scale from 1 to 5, where 1 is least important and 5 most important. These numbers will represent the Relative Value of each criterion on your list.
Take your ideas and evaluate them based on the list you just made. How does each idea meet the criterion? I created the numerical assessment bellow to keep it easy (0=criterion not met 1=criterion almost met 2=criterion met), but feel free to create your own values.
The Assessment Value of each idea is multiplied by the Relative Value giving it a final Value that is summed up in the Total. The idea with the highest score is the one that comes closer to meet your criteria and should be the one to focus on.
In case of a Total tie, choose the idea you are most excited about. Also, if the result of this test was disappointing for you because you were secretly ruling for another idea, then go with the one closer to your heart.
The Idea Rating Method, while it is very useful because it quantifies criteria that is difficult to assess otherwise, it is also highly subjective since you are the one establishing the rules of the evaluation. This means that it is not a science, it is just a tool that can help you make decisions in a structured and informed fashion.
If you try the Idea rating Method, I would love to hear from you with details about how it helped you or how it can be improved.
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