Best Ways to Manage Time – The 80-20 Rule

    Time Management

    If you said 60 that is correct but off topic. (sorry, I couldn’t resist)  Okay, here we go for real. Why the 80-20 rule is one of the best ways to manage time.

    The 80 – 20 rule, also known as the Pareto principle is all about cause and effect. It states that roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.  It is a way of thinking that can be used to maximize productivity at home and at work.  It was named after an Italian economist named Vilfredo Pareto who noticed (among other things)  that in his day (early 1900’s) 20% of Italians owned 80% of the land.

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     The Pareto principle is observed in many aspects of life and business:

    • A small percentage of customers tend to take up a majority of your time.
    • A small percentage of staff tend to produce the majority of results.
    • A small percentage of customers create the majority of revenue.
    • A small percentage of your products make a majority of your sales.

    I think you get the picture.

     We need to analyze how every aspect of our business is working.The trick to productivity and success is working smarter not harder.  Let’s stop beating our heads against the wall and start waging productivity war. It is The Vital Few vs The Trivial Many and the spoils of war will be – fabulous results with way less effort.

    Start thinking about The Trivial Many vs The Vital Few in every aspect of your life.  Figure out what is working and devote more time to that. Think about what is taking up the majority of your time.  If it’s not necessary, stop doing it.  If it is necessary or you’re not good at it, farm it out. There is no crime in outsourcing.  If you have control issues, like me, don’t worry, it gets easier with time. You’ll be wondering why you wanted to do some of this stuff in the first place.  Spend more time being productive on things that matter and less time on the things that don’t produce results.


    How to use 80-20 thinking to do what is best for you and your business.

    • Concentrate on the customers, products and staff that produce the most profit.
    • Forget about some of those old school myths like the customer is always right.  If a customer is a problem and takes up a disproportionate amount of your valuable time, lose them.  They are probably costing you money.  Concentrate on the good ones.
    • Trying to please everybody, all of the time is a costly mistake in life and in business.
    • If something isn’t working, stop doing it, or do it another way.
    • Just keeping yourself busy is not necessarily productive.  Work smarter, not harder.

    Read The 80-20 Principle By Richard Koch

    Thanks for your time.  Please share or leave your comments and ideas below.

    Sincerely, The MBO Team


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