Final Version Perfected (FVP) is an algorithm designed to help you decide which tasks from your to-do list to do in order of importance. Instead of blindly picking out tasks from a list, you order them based on importance and criticality before moving on to execution.
Why does it work?
- Easy to remember
- Reduces procrastination
- Helps in faster execution
- Useful when confronted with a large list of tasks
How does it work?
- Make a master list of all your tasks.
- Mark the first task as "Don't do it yet."
- For every following task, ask yourself if you would want to do it more than the last task you marked. If yes, mark it. If not, don't mark it. Move on to the next item.
- When you reach the end of the list, look at the bottom-most task and do it. Once done, check it off the list.
- Once checked off, repeat from step 3 on unmarked tasks but this time with the new bottom-most task (the one before the task you just checked off).
- Repeat step 4 until you run out of list items.
Final Version Perfected in action
Joanna has been struggling to prioritize her tasks, and because of it, she is often left pursuing tasks that are not moving the needle at her job. She hears about FVP from a colleague at her agency and decides to try it out with a list of tasks she currently has.
She starts off by marking the first task, "Buying Merchandise for Campaign," as a "Do not do it yet."
For every item on her list, she answers the question, "Would I want to do this task more than the task I marked?" and if the answer is yes, she puts a "Y" next to the task, and she repeats the process with the lastest task marked with Y.
Within a few minutes, she had gone through the entire task list, which otherwise would have taken her 3-4X the time. She picks the last task she marked with a "Y" and starts executing on it.
When done with the last task, she checks it off and repeats the process with the new bottom task. By the end of the day, she has gone through nearly 50% of her list, but it is a big win for her since the tasks she worked on were critical, and the ones that she couldn't do were lower on the priority scale.
She was happy with her productivity levels and decision-making ability for the day; she decided to try the FVP method for a few more days and even recommended it to her agency colleagues.