Many of us have heard that 80% of your results are achieved by 20% of your efforts. Since Pareto introduced that concept back in 1896 by identifying that 80% of Italy’s land was owned by 20% of the population, it has since been applied to science, engineering, healthcare, and sports. My assistant claims that 80% of what you wear comes from 20% of your wardrobe so the applications are limitless.
As a business coach, my clients frequently complain that there’s just not enough time to get everything done. Upon discussion, we have a lightbulb moment in which the client realizes that s/he is spending 80% of their time on trivial matters and only 20% of their time cultivating their core business, the very antithesis of what they should be doing. During our coaching sessions, I suggest these ways to increase their productivity – and profits – by incorporating the 80/20 rule:
- Focus on the 20% of your customers who are generating 80% of your profits. Cultivate those relationships and watch your bank account grow! Delegate the rest to your sales team and help them to nurture the future 20%.
- Identify the 20% of your friends and business associates who can provide 80% of your support, be it marketing or emotional. Conversely, eliminate the 20% – or more – of those who drain you of your energy or stand in the way of your success.
- Find the 20% of the tasks that you truly enjoy which bring the greatest reward and put 80% of your energy into them. The rest can be delegated or outsourced.
- 80% of a business’s problems come from 20% of the business. Is the 20% related to production? Delivery? A particular employee? Periodically review your processes, policies and procedures. Communicate expectations to your staff regularly. This is about fire prevention.
The common thread here is to simplify as much as you are able. Granted, the way we work has changed dramatically over the last two decades and we’re now “on” 24/7. However, by discovering how we are using our time, we can make informed decisions about how we choose to spend it.
My colleagues and I are ready to assist you in applying Pareto’s Law to your business and your life. Contact any of us for a no obligation complementary coaching diagnostic session and learn how we can add value to you and your business.