Ok, admittedly, that title is quite cryptic, but couldn't imagine any better short explanation.

What I mean is the following: The (expected) performance / qualification of employee A is MUCH higher than that of employee B for a given task X. The (expected) performance / qualification of employee A is also higher than that of employee B for task Y, but the difference is not that big.

In short, the general assumption (at least one that I have - may be discussed in another question), that 'everyone has his strengths and weaknesses' does not apply here, to the extend that A is considered to be more qualified / efficient in task completion than B.

Based on which criteria do you decide whom you assign to task X, and whom to Y? Priority and importance of the according tasks? Even though this may sound a little to rational, do you think the concept of 'comparative advantage' may be applied here (disregarding the fact that true qualification is hard to be quantified)?

Does your decision change if task Y is more important and of higher priority than task X?


The final part of your question implies that you have already decided that employee A should be given task X, and employee B by default would be allocated task Y, if the two tasks have similar priorities.

In general I would agree with this allocation: take it to extremes, and I would argue that it becomes obvious that if employee A has skills and employee B has no relevant skills for Task X, you would not normally give the task to employee B. The only reason to change this might be if the task is of low priority and you want to use it as a learning opportunity for employee B, perhaps under supervision from employee A.

My final comment at this stage is to say that there may be good justification for any allocation of duties, and if you do want to do something counter-intuitive, make sure that it is for the right reason, and that you record any associated risk in the project risk register (and monitor it!)

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