Sometimes, you might find that people struggle to determine the relative importance of a set of things. In the N2D Method, this might be business objectives, the people an organisation cares about, or custom dimensions in the Initiative Scorecard.

This is an example of how to use a paired comparison analysis to help a group figure out which dimension is more important than another dimension. You can use the same technique for objectives and "customers" too.

Make a grid and add the dimensions across the side and the top. In the white boxes (ignore the orange ones) note which dimension is more important than its pair by entering the letter of the most important one.

Then add a number after the letter. If it’s slightly more important enter 1. If it’s significantly more important enter 3. Use a 2 if it’s between. Then total the values for each letter.

In this example, A=5, C=4, B=3 and D=0, which gives us the relative importance of each dimension.

In this example:

  • A (Cost) is more important than C (Investment longevity)

  • C (Investment longevity) is more important than B (Time to implement)

  • B (Time to implement) is more important than D (Staff training)

NB - in this example, because D=0 it doesn't mean that D has no importance. It means that D is the least important.

If you really want to get into the maths, you can find out more about pairwise analysis, or paired comparison analysis here.

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