A 2×2 Matrix to Help You Prioritize the Skills to Learn Right Now

Article: https://hbr.org/2017/09/a-2×2-matrix-to-help-you-prioritize-the-skills-to-learn-right-now

So much to learn, so little time!
So there’s a significant pressure on us all to learn the right stuff. How do we identify what that is?

One approach is to apply a time-utility analysis (similar in form to a cost-benefit) to the subjects you’re interested in learning. “Time” is time to learn. It’s effectively the opportunity cost to you of achieving competence. “Utility” is how much you’re likely to use the desired skill.

Once you’ve decided what you want to learn, you can use this same framework to zero in on specific skills to focus on.

How would you apply this to your working, learning life?
Consider the mix of activities in your working day. What would help you the most? Are there meta-skills that would help you do all of these things better — like coming across the way you intend to in meetings, or learning to manage your time more productively? You could assign approximate scores for time (to learn) and utility for each of these and plot a scatter chart. Or you could just estimate: Classify the skills on your list as either low or high in utility and time to learn, and place them in the corresponding quadrant. Either way, what shows up in the bottom-right quadrant? You may discover some learning bargains.

You can use this approach just for yourself, or across a team, department, even your entire company. Since you probably don’t have much time to learn, learn to make the most of what you have