Principle and Your Business
The key theme of the
80/20 Principle applied to business is
how to create the greatest stakeholder value and generate most money with
the least expenditure of assets and efforts. Any individual business can
gain immensely through practical application of this Principle. The most
important use of the 80/20 Principle is "to isolate where you are really
making the profits and, just as important, where you are loosing money.
Every business person thinks they know this already, and nearly all are
wrong. If they had the right picture, their whole business would be
The game is to spot the few places
where you are making great surpluses – be that a product, a market, a
customer type, a technology, a distribution channel, a department, a
country, a type of transaction, an employee, or a
team – and to maximize
them; and to identify the places where you are loosing and get out.
8 Best Practices of Successful Companies
Case in Point
Warren Buffett – the richest man in the world and the most successful investor – said his
companies ability to generate such large profits is the result of being able
to focus on what is important, and not paying attention to things that would
distract the company...
Sustainable Competitive Advantage
Case in Point
The 80/20 Principle is used in
programs. In Ford Electronic Manufacturing Corporation's quality program
that won the Shingo prize,
just-in-time programs have been applied using the 80/20 rule (80% of the
value is spread over 20% of the volume) and top-dollar usages are analyzed
constantly. "Labor and overhead performance were replaced by Manufacturing
Cycle Time analysis by product line, reducing product cycle time by 95%."
8 Rules for Quality Management
Areas Targeted by TQM in Japan
"Because business is
and because complexity and waste feed on each other, a simple business will
always be better than a complex business." To succeed in
and transforming your business by applying the 80/20 Principle, you need to
demonstrate that simple is beautiful and why. Unless you understand this,
you will never be willing to give up underperforming 80% of your current
business and overheads. "The way to create something great is to create
something simple... Progress requires simplicity; and simplicity requires
"The truth is that the
unprofitable business is so unprofitable because it requires the overheads
and because having so many chunks of business makes the organization
horrendously complicated." And complexity means decay. Internal complexity
has huge hidden costs and depresses returns more effectively than anything
"A complex business can be made
more simple and returns can soar. All it takes is understanding of the costs
of complexity (or the value of simplicity) and
courage to remove at least four-fifths of lethal managerial overhead."
Selling and Competing
Selling Is Problem Solving
Synergistic Selling: 3 Arts
80/20 Principle helps you to
direct your attention where the real threat of competition exists. 80% of
your revenue comes from 20% of
your customers. Know who your top
revenue-producing customers are and make sure you meet their needs to win
their loyalty. "Focusing on
20% of your customers is a great deal easier than focusing on 100% of them."
Being customer centered on all your customers is impossible.
"But cherishing the core 20% is both feasible and highly rewarding."
The four steps to lock in your
Know who they are
Provide exceptional or even outrageous service to them
innovation in the relationship with this group – target
and services at the core 20% of customers, developing them for and with this
keep your core customers for ever.
"Margins - between value and cost,
between effort and reward - are always highly variable". High-margin
activities constitute 20% of total activities but 80% of total margins. You
must interfere with this natural allocation of resources unless you wish to
see these imbalances to grow even further. Acknowledge the reality that the
majority of what your firm does is worth much less than the minority of high
margin activities and reallocate resources to take your firm to a new higher
level. Don't stop there – do that again.