80/20 Rule. 80% of the issues can be mitigated by addressing 20% of problems
Step 1: Identify and List Problems
Firstly, write a list of all of the problems that you need to resolve. Where possible, talk to clients and team members to get their input, and draw on surveys, helpdesk logs and such like, where these are available.
Step 2: Identify the Root Cause of Each Problem
For each problem, identify its fundamental cause.
Step 3: Score Problems
Now you need to score each problem. The scoring method you use depends on the sort of problem you're trying to solve.
For example, if you're trying to improve profits, you might score problems on the basis of how much they are costing you. Alternatively, if you're trying to improve customer satisfaction, you might score them on the basis of the number of complaints eliminated by solving the problem.
Step 4: Group Problems Together By Root Cause
Next, group problems together by cause. For example, if three of your problems are caused by lack of staff, put these in the same group.
Step 5: Add up the Scores for Each Group
You can now add up the scores for each cause group. The group with the top score is your highest priority, and the group with the lowest score is your lowest priority.
Step 6: Take Action
Now you need to deal with the causes of your problems, dealing with your top-priority problem, or group of problems, first.
Keep in mind that low scoring problems may not even be worth bothering with - solving these problems may cost you more than the solutions are worth.