Reach your goal faster: Use the 80-20 rule

One of the biggest challenges in the life of an individual is the challenge to lead. It is a big challenge. Indeed such person can be made or marred by the actions taken in the exercise of that responsibility. This is true in any organization: be it a profit oriented venture like a business or a not for profit organizations like charities, religious organizations, improvement union or even government agencies.

The question on the lips of anyone who is given such opportunity in business or even in other forms of relationships is HOW WILL I SUCCEED in the new challenge?

Concerning an entrepreneur who is in business, it is expected that proper leadership and direction be given to his employees, whether they are paid employees or members of the family who are assisting in the business. A supervisor is required to lead his team to achieve the stated goal.

A man as the leader of his household in the traditional family setting is expected to lead his family effectively. It is the ability to provide effective leadership that determine the failure or success of the endeavor

For the entrepreneur who fails to prioritize, chaos and lack of direction for the enterprise will be the result. As for the head of a family it may lead to “a vote of no confidence” passed by the spouse or members of the family if no meaningful steps are taken to help the members of the family achieve their individual goals. It is a common incident today to see leaders/head of the family being considered “useless” by members of the family because of lack of effective leadership. This is very sad.

Prioritizing is indeed the key. To lead effectively you have to SET GOALS and then PRIOTIZE.

The first step in setting goals and prioritizing is to personally develop what you will attain at some point in the future. The vision need to be able to lead to the goals desired.

The mission is crucial in determining your vision. Your vision needs to coincide with the big picture. The term “vision” suggests a mental picture of what the future will look like. The concept also implies a later time horizon. This time horizon tends to be mid to long term in nature, focusing on as much as 2, 5, or even 10 years in the future for visions affecting the entire organization or union.
Vilfredo Pareto, a 19th century economist, theorized that most effects come from relatively few causes; that is, 80% of the effects come from 20% of the possible causes. For example, 20% of the inventory items in the business accounts for 80% of the inventory value. 20% of our activities actually accounts for 80% of our success result.

Some leaders fall into the time wasting trap of going after the 80% of items that only have a value of 20% of the total net worth. Your visions need to picture the 20% that will have the greatest impact on your organization, union or even your marriage. Although it is nice to have small victories every now and then by going that easy 80%, spend the majority of your time focusing on the few things that will have the greatest impact…that is what a good leader does.

If you want to see how real it is, as an exercise list all the activities in your business, or even your relationship. If the activities are 10, surprisingly 2 out of those10 activities will be responsible for about 80% of the desired result. While the rest 8 activities accounts for only 20 % of the desired result.

The strategies is to identified and concentrate more on that 20% of activities and spend less energy on the 80% that lead to only 20% of the success of your mission. By so doing you are working SMART instead of working HARD.

A lot of leaders are involved in 80% perspiration and 20% exploration, It is should be the reverse.
Once you have a vision, it needs to be framed in general, measurable terms and communicated to your team. If possible write it where everyone will read it over and over again. Your team then develops the ends (objectives), ways (concepts), and means (resources) to achieve the vision by priotising. The next you identify the 20% that lead to 80% of the result you desire. Then concentrate on that 20% so that 80% of your goal is achieved almost seamlessly. This is called the PARETO rule or 80-20 rule.

This aticle was written by George Onaifo, MBA FCIM, Post-MBA (McGill) is a Chartered Manager. He was Manager of the Year 1999, and Chief Consultant at Go Konsulting, a Canadian Business and Management consulting firm.1-514-887-3722 //

Author: Ade

A passionate follower of Jesus Christ, husband of a beautiful wife, father of two boys, and a pastor of a very loving church family. I love to play around with websites, blogs and also love reading.