Take a look at this graphic (it’s not mine).
It’s excellent. I just love the denotation of the bottom right as “distractions,” and bottom left as “noise.” Low importance, but either just taking up time or low importance but VERY URGENT!!! I saw it while reading Keith Baxter’s De-RISK blog. I know nothing about Keith, or the consulting company De-RISK, Ltd.
I love his take on issues versus risks. I’ve seen over and over companies that follow urgent distractions, or even urgent issues, to the total exclusion of risk identification, analysis, and management. If you feel like you’re always “putting out fires,” you’re stuck in the urgent. You’re stuck on issues, not on risks.
Go over and take a read.