Easy, Hard or Expensive?

 
 

Looking for a simple framework to help you prioritize ideas in a group strategy session?  Try:  Easy, Hard or Expensive.

Easy ideas are simple and cheap, won't meet much resistance in your organization and don't require lots of approvals, meetings or arm-twistings to implement.

Hard ideas can seem simple or be cheap (in theory) but will also take lots of time, effort or organizational "heavy lifting" to get off the ground despite their relative lack of cost.

Expensive ideas can be either simple or hard but have the added baggage of being costly to pursue and implement.

Easy and Hard might be obvious categories, but why Expensive?  

Lots of time, people discount (no pun intended) great ideas because they might cost a lot of money -- substituting price as a proxy for effort -- before even exploring an ROI that could be sky-high. By making Expensive a separate category, ideas don't disappear and everyone has permission to think big.

Once you've got the ideas divided in each category, the top Easy ones get done right away.  The best Hard ones get planned and Expensive ones get budgeted.

By using Easy, Hard or Expensive, you'll get immediate action items out of your meeting and divide items worthy of more attention into things that take real work and those that just take money.