The problem this resource solvesthe five questions to ask before starting a taskwhy you should use these five questionshow to use these questionswhen to use these questionsTemplate of the five questions

Are you focusing on the right thing?

Five questions you should ask at beginning of every task at work to determine: whether it is the right task to focus on delivering today; and how to best deliver on the task.

The Problem

For many of us, our workday is packed full of tasks, stress and demands from management and others in our organisation. We are often stuck in execution mode, without ever asking ourselves: is this task the right thing to actually be doing today for the organisation?

It sounds like a simple question, but more often than not, a lot of our attention focuses on things we are excited to do, what appears urgent according to our manager, or in general tasks that don't actually need to be done.

What are the five strategic task questions?

We have created five questions to ask yourself at the beginning of every task to determine if it is a task you should be completing today, and if so, how to best complete it.

Why use these five questions

It can sound like a lot of work thinking through these questions at the start of every task, and it does take effort. However, from our point of view, a bit of effort upfront pays off massively if it saves you from doing unnecessary work that day.

These five questions will help you focus on delivering value-add tasks, and ignore the tasks that can be done down the track. Think of it this way, if you try these five questions for one day, and you eliminate a single task from your list because it was unnecessary, then you will have more time to do the tasks that do matter.

How to use these questions

Print out the template one-pager (get the template at the bottom of this page), keep it next to you at work and refer to it each time you are starting a new task.

The purpose of printing the questions out is that the print-out will act as a physical cue to use the five questions. We are good at thinking we will remember to do something but many of us fail to follow through. The easiest way to change this is to set-up your environment for success, and have the five questions sitting next to you.

When to use these questions

Use these five questions every time you are starting a task, over time it will become second nature! 

Get the template

Download the template below, print it out and keep it by where you work.

Get Template
Get new Alto content!

Sign up to keep up to date with all things Alto and get the latest content.

By sharing your email, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Exit the pop-up button