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Where to start when everything feels urgent

By Sharron Helmke
April 2022
For those who support teachers, it can feel like there are myriad urgent needs, especially when educators are stretched thin and students are struggling, as many are now. How do you prioritize your support, and where do you start? The effort-to-impact matrix is a simple but valuable tool that can help instructional coaches, teacher teams, administrators, and other change agents prioritize their efforts and make strategic choices about which steps to take and when. It allows the user to map out potential strategies and identify how much effort each will take versus how much impact it is likely to make. The matrix is divided into four quadrants. (See figure below.) Quadrant 1 refers to low-effort, low-impact strategies. Strategies in this quadrant don’t require much educator

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Acting Vice President for Professional Services at Learning Forward | + posts

Sharron Helmke is a Gestalt and ICF certified professional coach. She’s a senior consultant for Learning Forward, facilitator of the Mentor and Coaching Academies, and co-facilitator of Learning Forward’s virtual coaching class Powerful Communication Skills for Coaches.


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