Pareto’s Principle: The 80/20 Law

Wilfredo Pareto is famous for expressing the concept of efficiency using mathematical expressions and the thing he is most famous for is the 80/20 rule. You will surely have heard of Pareto’s Principle, even if you have never heard it expressed as such, many people simply call it the 80/20 rule or 80/20 law. The principle states that where things polarise into two camps, they often do so at the 80/20 point.

The application of Pareto’s Principle to business should be credited to a guy named Jordan. He is responsible for suggesting that 80% of the output of an organisation comes from 20% of the workforce or that 80% of the sales come from just 20% of the customers. Empirically, there just seems to be something natural about the 80/20 point that makes this split more likely than others.

In fact, when someone asks me to guess a percentage, for anything, my reasoning goes like this. First, is the figure likely to be high or low? This is generally an easy thing to estimate. Then I always go for either 80% or 20% based on my estimate and do you know something? I am right about 80% of the time.

So, do you make use of the 80/20 Law? For example, in your time management, do you concentrate on the 20% of activity that is responsible for 80% of the success you experience? If not, it is certainly a factor to be thinking about in your prioritising. Learn to identify the high-leverage tasks and focus on them and you can increase your productivity dramatically.

There are many diverse things to which the 80/20 rule can be applied. If you apply this principle to weight loss, it necessitates doing only those things which will give you the best results. So, you have to do only those 20% of exercises which give you 80% of all your results. You have to cut down on that 20% of food that results in 80% of your fat accumulation, and so on.

Watch out for opportunities to apply Pareto’s Principle in your daily life. Try to keep an eye open for those things that are relatively easy to accomplish but are also proven to get you results; they are activities that are in the 20%, of course. Make sure you note them and commit do doing more of them and propel your efficiency to a new level.

We have an interesting free book on the application of Pareto’s Principle to weight loss right here …

The 80/20 Diet

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