80/20 Rule

80/20 Rule

You’ve probably heard it said that 20% of the people do 80% of the work. This is called the Pareto Principle, named after an Italian economist. One way to get to focus your workload is to analyze where you are spending most of your time.

Look at your client base. Who are the 80% of least profitable clients? Of the things you sell, what are the 80% that make you the least amount of money? Where are you spending your time? You can gain some back by cutting out the least profitable actions you’re taking and focus them elsewhere. I was relieved to hear that counts for social media as well. You don’t have to be on everything. Pick the venues that work best for you and your customers, and spend your time there.

Your entertainment choices might also be taking up more time than you really want to invest in them. If you have a boat, it has to be taken in and out of the water, maintained, serviced, cleaned, winterized, etc. How often do you really use the boat? If you use it often and enjoy it, it’s worth it. If you hardly have time to spend on it, why are you maintaining it? Same goes for a summer house.

Kevin Kruse, author of 15 Secrets of Successful People Know about Time Management, recommends doing the most important things exceptionally well, then settling on good enough for the rest, or drop them all together. Don’t try to master everything. Figure out the 20% that mean the most to you, or that are the most profitable to you and focus your time there.

This totally fits in with the work smarter, not harder attitude.