Updated: Dec 2, 2022
Many organizations, especially those using Agile, utilize some form of stack ranking to help groups make important decisions.
With RumbleRank, managers can help make the stack ranking process more efficient by providing an engaging way for individuals to rank lists themselves and then aggregate their results into easy-to-read data for the group to review.
Below, we've provided an opportunity to test out a stack ranking scenario using RumbleRank - plus the opportunity to sign up for a free account.
What is Stack Ranking?
Stack ranking considers every item in a list and then forces participates to place them in order from top to bottom. Stack ranking (sometimes referred to as forced ranking) is designed to help teams prioritize tasks, ideas or items - as there can only be one, top-ranked priority. In general, the items should be ranked according to one, understood attribute or criterion.
The concept of stack ranking was originally made popular by General Electric CEO, Jack Welch, in the 1980s. He used this system to rank employees rather than tasks or ideas. This particular approach for stack ranking, sometimes referred to as "rank and yank", has fallen out of favor with most management teams and instead has been used in more agreeable ways in agile management environments.
Is Stack Ranking Easy?
At first glance, this process may sound easy - people are simply collaborating as a group to rank things, right? As anyone whose participated in a conference room debate knows, this is not so simple.
When ideas are shared openly in a group setting, it's not uncommon for the loudest voice in the room to carry the most weight. "Boardroom bureaucracy", as we like to call it, can improperly skew the true opinion of the team away from less vocal participants.
If you're team is WFO or hybrid, it can also be difficult to properly facilitate a stack ranking discussion virtually.
How Can the Stack Ranking Process be Improved?
Regardless of how opinions are collected, stack ranking still requires teams to vocalize their opinions together to reach a conclusion. That said, there are ways to better facilitate that discussion which ultimately make the process more efficient.
This is where RumbleRank can help. RumbleRank is a group list ranking tool designed to provide each individual participant with the list at hand in the form of a "game" of head-to-head matchups.
Using a tree sort algorithm, each participant is presented two options at a time to choose from. By comparing matchups one by one, the ranking process is made more mentally digestible. Once all options have been sorted top-to-bottom, the results are revealed and then aggregated along with the results of every other team member. Managers leading the discussion then have an opportunity to share the anonymous results with the group to facilitate debate.
Test a Stack Ranking Scenario Using RumbleRank
Using the button below, test out a stack ranking scenario as an individual participant using RumbleRank. You will only see your own results, however a screenshot has been provided to show how data is presented in the RumbleRank account dashboard.
For this use case test scenario, you play the role of a web development team member looking to prioritize next steps for a new website build. You and the rest of the team would complete this list ranking and then review the results to facilitate discussion.
The creator of the list can access live data from the group's list ranking results at any time. As you can see below, data is provided in this quick menu that can be refreshed to update. Free accounts can create up to five active lists at a time and gather up to 25 responses from each active list. Data can also be downloaded into an excel document.
Creating a Free Account on RumbleRank
Creating your free account on RumbleRank is easy and it only requires an email address. Follow the button below to sign up. Free accounts can create up to five active lists at a time and collect up to 25 respondent rankings from each list.
If you need more for your team, upgrading your account to Unlimited provides the following additional benefits for just $25 per month:
Enjoy the tool ad free
Create an UNLIMITED number of lists and get an UNLIMITED amount of responses
Replace the RumbleRank logo and color scheme to your own logo and theme
Generate QR codes to share lists quickly with anyone
Download additional data points to track decision timers between head to head options
Other Use Cases for RumbleRank
Stack ranking isn't the only use for RumbleRank. Share lists with family, friends or co-workers to accomplish things like:
Choosing a restaurant on the weekend
Picking company logo design concepts
Ranking TV shows & movies
Creating engaging social media polls
Looking for inspiration? Check out our use case articles for both personal and business scenarios (or just for fun) for group list ranking ideas.