Chapter 42 Adhere To The 80/20 Rule


You're way behind. It's 95/5 now.

The Pareto Principle, known as the 80/20 rule, is commonly used to describe how 20% of something (the vital few) is responsible for 80% of the result (the trivial many). For example, 20% of a company's sales force might produce 80% of its sales, or 80% of a company's revenue is generated by 20% of its clients.

This concept of uneven distribution, or disproportionate cause and effect, applies to many situations and relationships, and it served us well in the twentieth century.

However, in my observation, it's mathematically obsolete. The vital few are fewer, and the trivial many are greater. The relationship is more disproportionate than ever before.

Would you like me to prove it? I can't. Any more than the original 80/20 rule can be proven. After all, it's a concept—not a law.

Perhaps you, too, have observed the degeneration of competence, performance, reliability, empathy, service, attitude, quality, effort, and productivity, among other things. Nearly anything of significance is now driven by an even more vital few.

Your company cannot afford for you to be trivial. So, if it's 95/5 now, how can everyone in your company be in the vital 5%?

They can't.

But you can.

That's why you're reading this book—and why you must be the vital exception to the trivial rule.

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