How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (2023)

When it’s All on the Front Burner: How to Deal With Conflicting Priorities

Do you remember those ball cages they used to have on the playgrounds at fast food franchises? You’d jump into a pool of colorful plastic balls, then sink helplessly until nothing but your arms and legs showed above the surface.

Navigating conflicting priorities feels a little like one of those pools. It’s a sinking sensation, and there’s nothing to grab onto as you flail around, trying to figure out where to start.

It’s not unusual to have a day or week when there’s just scads of things to get done—and only a teensy amount of time in which to do them. These days leave anyone with a sense of failure, as you’ll inevitably leave tasks half-finished, dishes unwashed, and laundry hampers full.

It’s also common to have conflicting priorities with people in our lives: a significant other or teammates at work. This sort of conflict is fodder for resentment and strife.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have perfect clarity and agreement about what needs to get done, and plenty of time in which to do it? It’d create so much calm in our lives, and free up brain space for creative thinking.

The good news is that you can achieve this clarity! By taking the right approach to handling conflicting priorities, you’ll be sailing rapidly through the tasks of your day in no time.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (1)

Overwhelm & Conflicting Priorities

Busyness is a condition that affects us all. If we really sat down and thought about it, most of us would come up with at least seventy things we could be doing right now. And the list would take at least two weeks to complete.

Sometimes, everything seems to come all at once. Confronted with a myriad of pressing needs puts us in a state of fluster. We’re left feeling really, really busy…but not actually completing anything!

Here are some methods for keeping on track by finding clarity amongst all our priorities.

1. Take a Step Back

When we’re in a tizzy over what to do with our time, it’s often because we’re looking at things in close-up.

Scaling back to an aerial shot provides greater visibility over the situation. Panning into the days and weeks ahead increases the visibility of our timeline.

Getting out of the weeds and minutiae means asking simple questions like “What do I need to get done today?” and “Which are the easiest things to do?”

From these wider perspectives, it’s possible to scribble out a sensible to-do list that ranks everything from least to most important.

2. Develop a Strategy

Planning is such an integral part of handling conflicting priorities. Just taking some time to look everything over helps to ease stress.

Sometimes planning your day takes just as long as some of the things on the list! But that’s ok. A day that’s well-planned saves time and energy: you’re not having to think about what to do, and when to do it. The execution has already been determined.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (2)

According to Brian Tracy, author of Eat that Frog: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time, it actually saves quite a bit of time:

“The good news is that every minute spent in planning saves as many as ten minutes in execution. It takes only about 10 to 12 minutes for you to plan your day, but this small investment of time will save you up to two hours (100 to 120 minutes) in wasted time and diffuse effort throughout the day.”

When laying out your plans for the day, week, or even the year, it’s important to allow time to breathe. If we jump from one activity to the next, it quickly leads to overwhelm and burnout.

Clarifying how long something takes, then adding an extra cushion, gives you the opportunity to press pause.

3. Think Laterally

Managing conflicting priorities is a bit of a riddle. Maybe your kids need dinner and your boss is expecting a report in his hands the next morning.

These sorts of conundrums leave you stretched. Solving them sometimes means thinking outside of the box.

Look to a friend or colleague who somehow manages to juggle it all. How would they handle the scenario?

Or brainstorm possibilities. Maybe working on the project piecemeal, in 20 minute snippets, is the answer. Having a pizza delivered is another way out.

(Video) CONFLICTING PRIORITIES Interview Question and Answer

Climbing out of fixed or traditional ways of thinking helps to manage conflicting priorities. Opening a window allows creative winds to blow in, and awakens us to possibilities we didn’t formerly realize.

4. Be Decisive

It’s easy to stall when we’re fretting over too much to do. Rather than figure out whether to pay the bills or go to the gym, it’s tempting to dilly-dally in the land of procrastination, with a good book or movie instead.

And then the pile of tasks starts to mount.

However, once you start knocking things off a massive to-do list, the cloud of overwhelm starts to lift. As each task is completed, you feel lighter and it’s easier to press on to the next thing.

That is, rather than vacillating about what should be getting done, taking decisive action is central to dealing with conflicting priorities.

And productivity often rewards us. After the end of a long day, we may find ourselves with a nice window for some leisurely reading after all.

In sum, overwhelm feels overpowering. However, managing conflicting priorities is something we can control. Using the right tools helps us to find clarity. And then it’s about taking decisive action.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (3)

Time Management and Conflicting Priorities

Do you ever have those exchanges with friends about how much you need to get together….and then it leads to nothing? Of course you do! We all have those conversations every day.

It’s so common, as well, to start off a New Year with a resolve to, say, start reading more….yet come February find that we’re so busy we don’t even have a chance to crack open a book.

Multi-tasking, sometimes, solves these sorts of priority conflicts. For example, rather than reading a book, it’s possible to listen to audiobooks on the commute to work.

But more often than not, we go from morning to night in a whirl of busyness, without finding any window to squeeze in the things we really want to be doing.

Here are a few methods for finding time for those priorities that keep eluding us.

1. Audit Your Time

Most days feel chock-full of activity. Yet, when looking back on any single day, it’s really hard to recall just exactly what we did, and even harder to remember how long anything took.

However, when we take a careful audit of just how we’re whiling away the 168 hours in each week, interesting patterns emerge.

Maybe we have a tendency to go down rabbit holes. Who of us hasn’t gone to the computer to check emails, and 90 minutes later realize we’ve done nothing but read click-bait articles and watch videos? And we haven’t even peeked inside the inbox!

Another huge time suck, it turns out, are things like trips to the grocery store, errands, and commuting in traffic.

Auditing time is a pretty simple process, really. First, build a spreadsheet with a row for each 30 minute interval of the day, and columns for every day of week. Then, every few hours during the day, using only a word or two, log how the time was spent. At the end of one or two weeks, go through and color code various activities, such as sleep, leisure, work, eating, social and errands. Finally, add up the total time spent on each activity.

Numbers don’t lie. After completing a time audit, most of us discover a time-wasting tendency, or even two. We may find that some of the stories we tell ourselves (“I am always working!” or “I never get to socialize”) aren’t entirely true.

This information empowers us to plan our schedules more deliberately. It’s easier to fit in those things we really want to be doing.

For example, waking up earlier to beat rush hour traffic opens up several hours each week. That’s plenty of time to fit in some leisurely reading. Or, consolidating errands and trips to the grocery store frees up time to meet friends.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (4)

2. Offload

It’s easy to get caught up into a pattern of thinking, “Everyone is busy, so I must do this” and “I must do this myself.”

One of the hardest words to use in the English language is that tiny little word, “no.” But sometimes that’s the only way to fit in those other things that need to get done.

When dealing with conflicting priorities, the solution often entails offloading. Ask yourself why you’re doing certain things. Could someone else be doing them?

If we’ve made commitments out of a sense of obligation, maybe it’s time to give them the boot, in order to make time for things that matter more.


3. Plot it Out

Time, as we’ve been discussing, is often the culprit who robs us of our ability to get it all done.

However, when we really pin down just how much time things take, it’s possible to snatch back a few of those precious hours and put them toward other important priorities.

Here is an exercise to do just that.

On a blank sheet of paper, create two columns. In one column, write down everything that you need to do in a given time frame (a day, a month, or a week). In the other column, write how long each item takes. Next, add up the amount of time.

When everything is laid out, look carefully through it all. What’s taking the most amount of time? Maybe these activities can be reduced, postponed, or cut out altogether.

Understanding how long everything takes shows you the windows where you can fit other things in.

In sum, time management plays a central role in dealing with conflicting priorities. And the solution isn’t magic. But with a few special potions approaches, it is possible to conjure up a few more hours in the day. And that extra time makes room for priorities we’ve been neglecting.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (5)

Priorities Abound

A “priority” means something of utmost importance. It’s at the tippy top of the to-do list.

Yet in a single day, we’re constantly presented with multiple “super critical” things that need to happen in the same instance.

Let’s say, for example, you really want to have a peaceful dinner when you come home from work. At the same time, it’s imperative that your kids eat a healthy meal. If your kids have a meltdown when they see a plate of steamed broccoli and carrots in front of them, however, it’s impossible to achieve both.

Or maybe we have a free hour in the afternoon. Do we spend it at the gym, in order to stay on track with our diet, or call the sister we’ve been meaning to get in touch with?

When life puts us between a rock and a hard place, it feels easiest to remain in the badlands of indecision.

How do we cross over into the lush valley of action and clarity? Here are a few pointers and guidelines.

1. Pick One (or Two) North Stars

If everything is important, it means nothing really is important. Every leader knows this. When you plot out too many goals, you don’t end up achieving any of them.

Managing conflicting priorities means stepping back from the din of to-dos, and assessing the bigger picture.

What are our overall goals, both professionally and personally? These can be for just a season, or the entire year. Maybe you want to spend more time with your family. Or increase clients for the quarter by 10%.

When you understand the direction you really want to be headed, it’s much easier to navigate all of the to-dos demanding your attention.

In letting the North Star be your guide, you may find that many of the other things fall into place as well.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (6)

2. Distinguish Between “Shoulds” and “Musts”

Podcaster Sherri Yuan Hunter has coined the term “shouldaholic.” It’s such a common addiction to clutch tightly a litany of “shoulds.”

We’re always telling ourselves things like: “I should be saving money, and I should be taking a vacation to the Baja Peninsula like all of my friends” and “Our kids should spend the hour before dinner doing homework, practicing the piano, and playing with friends.”

But the fact is, we can’t meet all of our expectations. Clinging to all of the “shoulds” is a recipe for feeling like we’re failing all the time.

A realistic approach means accepting trade-offs. Maybe a vacation is a great idea. But in order to save money, it can’t be to an all-inclusive resort. Or maybe the kids don’t finish their homework when friends come to play.

The “good cheap fast” triangle popular with project management provides a great framework for evaluating trade-offs. With this triangle, you pick two qualities, knowing that you won’t receive the third. For example, something can be good and cheap, but it won’t be fast. Or, something will be fast and good, but it won’t be cheap. Or, it will be cheap and fast, but it won’t be good.

When we similarly evaluate all of the trade-offs particular to our situation, it’s possible to identify the area where we’re most willing to compromise.
Handling conflicting priorities is about letting go. When we accept that something’s got to give, it’s easier to distinguish between our “shoulds” and “musts.”

(Video) 🔥 How to Handle Conflicting Priorities. Job Interview Q&A.

3. Ask Questions to Clarify

When faced with conflicting to-dos, it’s easy to become muddled. From this state, the path toward is opaque and indiscernible.

Asking clarifying questions is a method for clearing away some of the brain fog. Some good questions include: “What is the real purpose of this activity? Can it be achieved in another way?” and “What is the consequence of not doing this?”

If the house is burning down, it needs to be attended to right here, right now. However, many things can be put off for another day, or even a week, and everything will be just fine.

Taking the time to answer these questions allows imperatives to surface. Journaling is a helpful way to flush everything out. From there, it’s easy to bring decisive action into a situation.

4. Look Down the Rabbit Hole

What we do with our lives today doesn’t only affect us in the here and now. It also impacts us in the future.

Managing conflicting priorities is about making good decisions. By carefully considering the impact of our choices, it’s easier to identify what we need to do today.

Five or six years from now, what is the impact of going to the gym in the evenings, versus putting in a few extra hours of work each day?

Writing these projections down is helpful. What is the fruit of a particular decision in one week, a month, a year, and five years from now?

Evaluating the long-term effects allows us to get real about what is important in the here and now.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (7)

5. Do the Simplest Thing

Sometimes, no matter how many times and from whichever angle we evaluate conflicting priorities, it’s never clear which choice is the best or what matters the most.

Maybe your daughter’s baby shower is the very same day as your BFF’s 50th birthday party.

In these instances where the scales are equally balanced on both sides, you can’t expect a clear priority to emerge.

At these times, picking the simplest thing is a good way to go. If one commitment means flying across the country, and another is only an hour’s drive away, then just stay put.

Although you won’t arrive at perfect clarity about the right decision, at least this way you’re saving money and energy.

In sum, we’re constantly faced with dilemmas in which several things vie for the top spot on our to-do list. In order to navigate a path forward, it’s necessary to accept that tradeoffs are unavoidable.

From there, identifying the most important item among the conflicting to-dos is about understanding the impact of each choice.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (8)

Teams or Relationships With Conflicting Priorities

It’s easy to hit a wall right away when broaching certain topics with a significant other. Take finances, for example. It’s tricky to arrive at a consensus around priorities when one person is a spendthrift and the other a skinflint.

The same thing happens all the time at workplaces. When people approach the same project with a different set of priorities, collaboration is a constant struggle.

It’s tempting to skirt around these sorts of conflicts. Discussing them can easily become argumentative and acerbic.

However, having these discussions is critical to navigating a path forward. Here are four guidelines to arriving at a consensus when people have conflicting priorities.

1. Re-Spin it

When our needs are sidelined, whether at work or in a personal relationship, oftentimes our first inclination is to throw a fit. “No one understands me!” and “They never get any work done over there!” and “What are they thinking?” are common reactions.

In order to approach a conflict from a place of respect, however, it’s important to pay close attention to the narrative we’re telling ourselves.

Is it really accurate to play the victim? Or to assume the worst of others?

When the problem is framed in a way that presumes another’s best intentions, it’s possible to move forward. Mutual respect is a cornerstone to fluid communication.

(Video) 👊 Interview Question | When You Faced with Conflicting Priorities (+ Example)

2. Establish Clear Boundaries

A boundary clarifies what you are responsible for, and what another person is responsible for.

When a project isn’t being conducted or progressing as you think it should, it’s tempting to do whatever you can to maneuver things back on course.

However, this can easily lead to the violation of another person’s boundary or role. After that, the relationship quickly deteriorates.

Respecting boundaries allows everyone in a team or relationship to thrive.

By accepting that certain areas of an issue or project are out of your domain, it keeps your focus on the areas you can control.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (9)

3. Have an Open Conversation

Forming a healthy narrative and establishing clear boundaries is a good foundation from which to discuss conflicting priorities with another person.

When broaching the topic, it’s important to air your concern candidly, with full transparency. “We need the reports finished weekly: I’ve noticed they’ve been taking three weeks.”

These conversations are about listening, and an open question allows things to surface.

Oftentimes, another person sees the situation from an entirely different perspective: they may be dealing with some overwhelm, or their understanding of a job well done is quite different from yours.

It’s important to clarify your priority, however: “My understanding is this.”

A transparent conversation, free of any accusatory language, allows all of the issues and concerns to surface and hopefully needs are met.

4. Talk With a Third Party

When a team cannot resolve conflicting priorities on its own, the next step is to bring the concerns to the manager. Oftentimes, the manager may not realize they have communicated conflicting priorities.

While in this conversation, it’s important for everyone to establish what “done” looks like, so the whole team is working toward the same finish line.

In the case of personal relationships, discussing a conflicting priority with a third party is helpful as well. A mediator helps both sides achieve a clear understanding of the other’s point of view, and work toward a solution.

In sum, it’s really easy to back off or become defensive when conflicting priorities arise within teams and relationships. It’s a delicate tightrope to cross.

However, cautiously navigating these conflicts creates transparency.
Conflicts are part and parcel to any collaborative work environment. When issues are surfaced and discussed, it keeps things from festering.

How to Deal with Conflicting Priorities [Guide with Examples] (10)

The Path Ahead

Having three or four pots on the front burner is a sure recipe for getting burned.

Whether you’re working on your to-do list for the weekend, or juggling a project with your team, you don’t have to sink in the quagmire of conflicting priorities.

With the right approach, it’s possible to strike a balance.

Your priorities will look different from another’s, and so it’s about knowing yourself. Respecting another’s approach is integral to finding common ground.

When conflicting priorities are resolved, you’re able to move forward on a project with momentum and peace of mind. It creates space for curiosity and calm.

What is your go-to trick for handling conflicting priorities?


Can you give me an example of how you have handle multiple priorities? ›

Example Answer 4:

I've had to juggle multiple deadlines and projects in my two most recent jobs, so I developed a system that works well for me. I use a calendar and alert system to track my priority list so I can see what's the most time-sensitive and urgent among my tasks.

How would you deal with conflicting priorities from stakeholders and management? ›

  1. Address Conflicts Early. ...
  2. Uncover Motivations Behind the Stakeholders' Perspectives. ...
  3. Look For Relationships Between Issues. ...
  4. Involve Senior Management. ...
  5. Solicit Agreement to Objectives and Approach from Divergent Stakeholder Groups. ...
  6. Use Multiple Routes and Forms of Communication.

How do you prioritize your work examples? ›

An example of this could be: “I'd be lost without my daily to-do list! At the beginning of each workday, I write out tasks to complete, and list them from highest to lowest priority. This helps with my workflow and keeps me on track with what needs to get done for the day.”

How would you handle multiple priorities with the same deadline? ›

Here are some practical tips for managing multiple deadlines without exhausting yourself in the process:
  1. Diarise your deadlines. ...
  2. Prioritise your tasks. ...
  3. Set a personal deadline. ...
  4. Break down your workload. ...
  5. Minimise distractions. ...
  6. Stick to your working hours. ...
  7. Stay healthy. ...
  8. Be honest.
4 Jun 2019

How do you handle conflict? ›

Tips for Managing Conflict
  1. Accept conflict. Remember that conflict is natural and happens in every ongoing relationship. ...
  2. Be a calming agent. ...
  3. Listen actively. ...
  4. Analyze the conflict. ...
  5. Model neutral language. ...
  6. Separate the person from the problem. ...
  7. Work together. ...
  8. Agree to disagree.

How do you manage your priorities? ›

Tips for effective priorities management.
  1. Understand top company objectives. ...
  2. Align team goals with company objectives. ...
  3. Standardize and score work requests. ...
  4. Encourage the team to make time for important but not urgent work. ...
  5. Make course corrections.
18 Mar 2022

What are your top 3 priorities at work? ›

Top 3 Priorities in a New Job
  • Learning the Ropes. One of your top priorities in a new job should be learning the ropes. ...
  • Building Relationships. Another top priority in a new job should be building relationships with your colleagues. ...
  • Delivering Results.
6 Mar 2022

How do you answer how do you handle multiple tasks? ›

Example Answer

I find gratification in accomplishing more than less, so I prefer to take on a little more. It's better than handling only one issue at a time. I've learned to batch tasks so that I'm focusing on similar activities at the same time. That way, I don't lose time and focus when I switch tasks.

What is conflicting requirement explain with an example? ›

An example of a conflicting requirement might be that the Human Resources stakeholder group explicitly requests to capture the age of an employee, but the Data Privacy team is saying that the age of the employee may not be captured or used in reporting.

How do you manage conflicting priorities in product management? ›

The only way to deal with conflicting priorities in building a tech product is to prioritize.
Photos courtesy of the individual members.
  1. Ensure you fully understand everyone's positions and interests. ...
  2. Set the ground rules early. ...
  3. Prioritize interdepartmental communication.
13 Jan 2021

What are the 4 levels of prioritizing tasks? ›

Another prioritization technique, the Eisenhower Decision Matrix or Urgent-Important Matrix, starts by organizing tasks into four quadrants, based on whether they are:
  • Important.
  • Urgent.
  • Important and urgent.
  • Neither.
18 Jul 2022

How do you deal with pressure or stressful situations? ›

2. Commit to a Positive Attitude
  1. Decide what you can do. Pinpoint which parts of the situation you have the power to change or influence for the better. ...
  2. Get support. Find someone to talk to about your situation. ...
  3. Care for yourself. Take especially good care of yourself when stress in your life is high.

How do you answer how would you describe a difficult situation? ›

How to respond to “Tell me how you handled a difficult situation”
  1. Situation: Explain the event/situation in a few concise sentences.
  2. Task: Briefly describe the task/situation you handled, giving relevant details as needed.
  3. Action: Explain the actions you used to complete your task or solve your issue.

How did you manage 2 or 3 tasks at the same time? ›

Just calm down and make a quick to-do list. Don't start multiple tasks at once. Figure out the urgent and important ones and start doing them one by one. You can use an online task manager and time management tool to help you create a to-do list and divide your time between the tasks.

How do you prioritize competing priorities? ›

To help you manage your team's workload and hit deadlines on time, here are 6 steps to prioritizing projects that have a lot of moving parts.
  1. Collect a list of all your tasks. ...
  2. Identify urgent vs. ...
  3. Assess the value of your tasks. ...
  4. Order tasks by estimated effort. ...
  5. Be flexible and adaptable. ...
  6. Know when to cut.

How do you juggle multiple priorities? ›

7 Ways to Juggle Multiple Project Tasks—and Get Things Done
  1. Have a positive attitude. ...
  2. Create a plan. ...
  3. Manage up effectively. ...
  4. Don't be a Yes Person. ...
  5. Know your perfect juggling amount. ...
  6. Focus on the task at hand. ...
  7. Complete something every day.

What are the 5 ways to deal with conflict? ›

This article outlines five different approaches to conflict management and the situations they are most appropriate for.
  1. Accommodation. This is a lose/win situation. ...
  2. Compromise. ...
  3. Avoidance. ...
  4. Competition. ...
  5. Collaboration.

What are 5 ways to resolve conflict? ›

The Top 5 Conflict Resolution Strategies
  • Don't Ignore Conflict. ...
  • Clarify What the Issue Is. ...
  • Bring Involved Parties Together to Talk. ...
  • Identify a Solution. ...
  • Continue to Monitor and Follow Up on the Conflict.

Why is it important to manage your priorities? ›

Establishing priorities is necessary in order to complete everything that needs to be done. Prioritization is important because it with allow you to give your attention to tasks that are important and urgent so that you can later focus on lower priority tasks.

What are examples of priorities? ›

Examples of Priorities
  • Work.
  • Family.
  • Health.
  • Home.
  • Relationships.
  • Friendships.
  • Hobbies.
  • Recreation/Fun.
29 Apr 2018

What are your top 5 priorities? ›

Top 5 Things To Prioritize In Life
  • Health.
  • Family + Relationships.
  • Self-Improvement.
  • Money.
  • Balance.

Can you please explain with examples a time when you had to multitask? ›

Example: "In a previous position, there was a day I focused on a high priority task. While doing so, management called my department into an all-hands meeting over the phone. I was unable to move away from my work, so I joined the call and continued.

Can you give an example of a time you had to make a difficult decision? ›

For example: I had to decide which of my clients would get the training in the promised time period. Action: What did you do to help you make your choice? For this question, interviewers are most interested in your decision-making process, so that should be emphasized the most.

How do you handle conflict between stakeholders? ›

You can help stakeholders resolve the conflict by reframing the conflict as a problem-solving exercise. Seek to understand the differences of opinions and makes them transparent, carefully leading individuals and groups to find common ground. This is more than consensus.

How do you handle conflict as business analyst? ›

I would contribute to the techniques that you have used for resolving conflicts successfully.
  1. Rationale investigation. Often stakeholders state something as their need. ...
  2. Discussion. ...
  3. Compromise. ...
  4. Voting. ...
  5. Definition of variants. ...
  6. Expert opinion. ...
  7. Decision matrix. ...
  8. Overruling.
2 May 2018

How do business analysts deal with conflict? ›

We need to understand the real needs behind the stated needs, the issues behind the positions. It is important for those in conflict to resolve it themselves. Once all participants understand the problem, we need to hold a brainstorming session to generate ideas to solve the problem.

What's your approach to prioritizing tasks? ›

Thoughtful prioritization typically involves creating an agenda, evaluating tasks, and allocating time and work to bring the most value in a short amount of time. Prioritization should be flexible, as you may need to interrupt low-priority tasks for urgent must-dos.

How would you handle it if the priorities for a project you were working on were suddenly changed? ›

What would you do if the priorities on a project you were working on changed suddenly? Sample excellent response: I would notify everyone working on the project of the changes. I would then want to know why the priorities have changed, and if there is risk of them changing again in the future.

What is an example of stakeholder management? ›

Examples include employees, customers, shareholders, suppliers, communities, and governments. Upstream stakeholders contribute to or approve the activities required to design, build and bring a product to market.

How do you deal with internal and external stakeholders? ›

5 Tips For You To Improve Your Communication With Internal and External Stakeholders.
  1. Identify and Profile Your Stakeholders.
  2. Establish the Goal For Your Communication.
  3. Choose Your Communication Medium.
  4. Communicate Your Message Concisely and Clearly.
  5. Monitor Feedback and Follow Up.
14 Apr 2021

How do you handle conflicting priorities interview question? ›

Here are some steps, with examples, that you can use to help guide you when answering interview questions about conflicting priorities:
  1. Explain how you plan your day. ...
  2. Describe how you adjust priorities. ...
  3. Talk about how you meet deadlines. ...
  4. Describe how you manage work-life balance.
5 Jul 2022

What are prioritization skills? ›

What Are Prioritization Skills? Prioritization skills help students determine which tasks are the most important and urgent and how much time to allocate to each task. Knowing how to prioritize tasks helps students be more productive by making the best use of their time.

How do you manage and Prioritise your workload? ›

Rank tasks according to their importance or urgency to help focus your mind.
  1. Use free online to-do tools. ...
  2. Focus on key tasks for workload management. ...
  3. Break big tasks into sub tasks. ...
  4. Be realistic with your time. ...
  5. Avoid multitasking. ...
  6. Learn to delegate. ...
  7. Avoid distractions. ...
  8. Save time with repetitive tasks.

Can you work under pressure best answer? ›

In most cases, the best answer to this question is answering yes. Working well under pressure is a good trait to have. However, I think if you answer that you work the same with pressure and without pressure, the interviewer will be more impressed.

What is a good example of working under pressure? ›

Examples of how the ability to work under pressure can be developed or evidenced. Dealing with an emergency. Overcoming problems or issues to achieve a goal, e.g. losing assignment data or work. Reorganising responsibilities in a group task if one member unexpectedly drops out.

What are some examples of stressful situations? ›

Difficult Life Situations

Moving, divorce, a painful break-up, the death of someone close, difficult emotions, family conflict — these things can create stress that takes more time to resolve. It might seem like the feelings that come with these stressful situations will never go away.

What are examples of difficult situations at work? ›

Here are some examples of common difficult situations in the workplace:
  • Not getting on with a colleague.
  • Not feeling able to speak up about something you feel is wrong.
  • Your team doesn't pull together.
  • Dealing with a disciplinary issue.
  • Someone has made an insensitive comment.

What are examples of difficult situations? ›

10 Difficult Life Situations And How To Make The Best Out Of Them
  1. Quarter-life, midlife crisis. As we age, we see ourselves changing physically and mentally. ...
  2. Breakups. Love happens and breakups too. ...
  3. Changing friendship. ...
  4. Failures. ...
  5. Divorce. ...
  6. Losing a job. ...
  7. Getting older. ...
  8. Getting injured, falling sick.

How do you work with difficult person interview question? ›

How to answer "Tell me about a time you worked with difficult people"
  • Consider an instance in which you experienced a specific challenge with a coworker. ...
  • Speak objectively while explaining the premise of the situation. ...
  • Reflect on the experience and take ownership of your own actions.

What do you do when priorities change quickly interview question? ›

Begin by telling the interviewer that you are an adaptable person, and you simply change directions when priorities change, keeping a positive attitude. Next, think about a time when something really urgent came up. This is your example!

How do you manage multiple conflicting tasks at once? ›

  1. Organize all paperwork and materials for each project. ...
  2. Break down each project into tasks. ...
  3. Establish a timeline for each project. ...
  4. Identify project tasks that pose conflict. ...
  5. Prioritize one project over another for tasks that conflict. ...
  6. Delegate tasks to other team members. ...
  7. Stay abreast of each project's progression.

What are your top 3 priorities at work? ›

Top 3 Priorities in a New Job
  • Learning the Ropes. One of your top priorities in a new job should be learning the ropes. ...
  • Building Relationships. Another top priority in a new job should be building relationships with your colleagues. ...
  • Delivering Results.
6 Mar 2022

How do you prioritize competing priorities? ›

To help you manage your team's workload and hit deadlines on time, here are 6 steps to prioritizing projects that have a lot of moving parts.
  1. Collect a list of all your tasks. ...
  2. Identify urgent vs. ...
  3. Assess the value of your tasks. ...
  4. Order tasks by estimated effort. ...
  5. Be flexible and adaptable. ...
  6. Know when to cut.

What are the 4 levels of prioritizing tasks? ›

Another prioritization technique, the Eisenhower Decision Matrix or Urgent-Important Matrix, starts by organizing tasks into four quadrants, based on whether they are:
  • Important.
  • Urgent.
  • Important and urgent.
  • Neither.
18 Jul 2022

How do you deal with pressure or stressful situations? ›

2. Commit to a Positive Attitude
  1. Decide what you can do. Pinpoint which parts of the situation you have the power to change or influence for the better. ...
  2. Get support. Find someone to talk to about your situation. ...
  3. Care for yourself. Take especially good care of yourself when stress in your life is high.

How do you answer a prioritizing question? ›

Interview question: How Do You Prioritize Work?
  1. Create a to-do list for prioritizing your work. ...
  2. Determine priority versus secondary projects and processes. ...
  3. Estimate project time. ...
  4. Re-evaluate and suggest recommendations. ...
  5. Effectively manage workload. ...
  6. Stay focused on the tasks at hand.
29 Jun 2021

How do you handle multiple tasks at once interview question? ›

Example Answer

I find gratification in accomplishing more than less, so I prefer to take on a little more. It's better than handling only one issue at a time. I've learned to batch tasks so that I'm focusing on similar activities at the same time. That way, I don't lose time and focus when I switch tasks.

How do you juggle competing priorities urgent important? ›

When looking at how to prioritize tasks best, ask which one of the quadrants they best fit in: Urgent and Important: Do these tasks as soon as possible. Important, but not urgent: Decide when you'll do these and schedule it. Urgent, but not important: Delegate these tasks to someone else.

What are examples of priorities? ›

Examples of Priorities
  • Work.
  • Family.
  • Health.
  • Home.
  • Relationships.
  • Friendships.
  • Hobbies.
  • Recreation/Fun.
29 Apr 2018

How do you organize your priorities? ›

How to prioritize work when everything's important
  1. Have a list that contains all tasks in one.
  2. Identify what's important: Understanding your true goals.
  3. Highlight what's urgent.
  4. Prioritize based on importance and urgency.
  5. Avoid competing priorities.
  6. Consider effort.
  7. Review constantly and be realistic.
6 Feb 2020

How do you manage your priorities to meet your deadlines? ›

8 tips to meet your deadlines
  1. Communicate a clear deadline.
  2. Break down the project.
  3. Have a start and completion date for each step.
  4. Block off time on your calendar.
  5. Focus on action (vs. motion)
  6. Communicate progress with your team.
  7. Add a buffer time.
  8. Don't overcommit.
13 May 2022


1. HOW DO YOU PRIORITIZE YOUR WORK? (The PERFECT ANSWER to This Tough Interview Question!)
2. Conflicting Priorities -Strategies, Tools, and Tactics to Overcome
(Echo Consulting)
3. How do you manage conflicting priorities?
(Narmie Thambipillay)
4. Managing Conflicting Priorities - Dealing With Other People’s Priorities
(Rachel Steininger)
5. Ask May: What to Do When You Have Competing Priorities
(May Busch - Creating Leaders)
6. Webinar: Conflicting Priorities Strategies, Tools, and Tactics to Overcome
(Echo Consulting)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Twana Towne Ret

Last Updated: 03/12/2023

Views: 5823

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (64 voted)

Reviews: 87% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Twana Towne Ret

Birthday: 1994-03-19

Address: Apt. 990 97439 Corwin Motorway, Port Eliseoburgh, NM 99144-2618

Phone: +5958753152963

Job: National Specialist

Hobby: Kayaking, Photography, Skydiving, Embroidery, Leather crafting, Orienteering, Cooking

Introduction: My name is Twana Towne Ret, I am a famous, talented, joyous, perfect, powerful, inquisitive, lovely person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.