355-3 KiE Basics – Prioritization Process

KiE Prioritization Process

Every form of collaboration requires the Prioritization Process. This is even more true for agility. It can only be achieved if prioritization is done beforehand, so that one invests in the right topics and does not get lost in the trivial and subsequently get further entangled.

The Prioritization Process is thus the central and first tool for managers and even more so for teams that work together in a self-organized way.
Prioritization itself is a complex process and can only be carried out consciously by evaluating each individual option, story or task – usually according to urgency and importance – and then putting them in an order.

Prioritizing with gut feeling does not work, even if some managers believe that. What is true: Experienced decision-makers carry out the Prioritization Process at high speed because they know how to do it.

In order to act and react in a flexible way, fast and good decisions have to be made. This applies to the alignment of the strategy as well as to the selection of stories for a sprint in agile methods. scrum itself is a prioritization process: what will be done in the sprint and what won’t.

Before any decision making, it must be made clear what needs to be done and what does not need to be done. Digitization can only be achieved by prioritizing so that companies invest in the right topics and don’t get lost in the unimportant and then get further trapped. The prioritization process is the central and first tool for managers and even more for teams that work together in a self-organized way.

In uncertain decisions, the emotional motives are not satisfied. As a result, thought cycles are repeatedly triggered anew, which is the cause of many inner conflicts, as well as initiating and firing up unpleasant group dynamics and excessive meetings.

Elon Musk calls them the ” Blight of our Time”. All this leads to non-decision and broken commitments. The lack of awareness for our inner decision-making processes is also the reason for the weakness in decision-making and leadership as well as the current excitement about agility, agile cooperation and leadership itself. 

Prioritization and decision-making are two fundamentally different processes that are processed in two different decision-making systems in the brain. Everyone can decide with intuition, gut feeling, or consciously with cognition. But prioritization is only achieved with cognition.

Prioritization is a complex process and can only be performed consciously by rating each individual option, story or task – usually by importance and objecthood – in order to put it in sequence.


Graf, Richard. (2018). Die neue Entscheidungskultur: Mit gemeinsam getragenen Entscheidungen zum Erfolg. München: Hanser Verlag.

Youtube: KiE – Prioritization ist the first step

Spiegel: “Unsere Intelligenz sinkt”


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