Prioritize Ideas with a PICK Chart

After an ideation session where your team has come up with numerous ideas, you need a process to help them choose the best idea(s).  The PICK chart below is Lean Six Sigma tool that is used to sort ideas in order to determine which one(s) are likely to have the greatest Return on Investment (ROI). 

After the ideas have been generated and written on sticky notes, each idea is placed on a PICK chart.  The PICK chart is a 2×2 matrix.  The horizontal line represents the Potential Benefits (ROI) of the idea.  The vertical line represents the Costs/Risks of the ideas. See the chart below for an example.

As soon as all the ideas are posted, it is usually easy to see which ones are the best bets and which ones to avoid.

Instructions:
  1. The team writes each idea on a sticky note.
  2. Collectively the team decides where the first sticky note goes.
  3. Then, they take the second idea and place it on the chart in relation to the first idea.
  4. They will take the third idea and place it on the chart in relation to the first and second idea.
  5. This process will continue until all ideas are posted.
  6. Allow the team time to review the chart and decide if anything needs to be adjusted.
  7. Finally, evaluate the ideas to determine which to pursue, which to consider, and which to kill:
  • Any idea that is Low ROI & Low Cost/Risk is considered as a Possibility.
  • Anything that is High ROI & Low Cost/Risk is Implemented. (Also called “Low Hanging Fruit” or “Quick Wins”
  • Any idea that is High ROI & High Cost/Risk is considered as a Challenge.
  • Any idea that is Low ROI & High Cost/Risk is “Killed”.
Summary

This engaging activity allows the team to quickly sort a long list of ideas and decide which ones to pursue.  It’s active, colorful, and creates an interesting discussion as the team considers each idea and compares it to the others.  In the end, the team has information that will help them select the idea(s) with the greatest ROI as compared to the effort required.

About the Author: Leigh Ann Rodgers, Founder of Better Teams, is an IAF Certified Professional Facilitator with 20 years of experience in the human development field. Leigh Ann is a skilled meeting facilitator, trainer, and coach working across the globe to help leaders cultivate teams that are highly productive and positive. Learn about her Better Teams Model and Team Assessment here.

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