1% of your effort delivers approximately 51% of your results

November 30th, 2018 By: Ash

1% of your effort delivers approximately 51% of your results

In the late 1800s Vilfredo Pareto noticed something interesting in his garden. He noticed that a tiny number of pea pods produced the majority of the peas.

Now Vilfredo was an economist and had a thing for mathematics. So he decided to explore the strange phenomenon he noticed in the pods in his garden. He looked to see if this unequal distribution was present in other areas of life. He found a similar pattern in wealth distribution in Italy, and then later in Britian.

This came to be known as Pareto efficiency or the 80 20 rule.

The 80 20 rule states that about 20% of your efforts will yield 80% of your results. The remaining 80% of your efforts will yield only 20% of your results.

Take this one level further and you’ll see that 4% (20% of 20%) of your efforts yield 64% (80% of 80%) of your results.

Take that one step further again, and you’ll see that 1% (20% of 4%) of your efforts yield 51% (80% of 64%) of your results.

So naturally, it makes sense to focus on the top 1% of your efforts first.

The question is: which if your total efforts makes up that 1%?

I answer this question (and lots more) in my premium productivity course which you can access via the Productive Insights Membership Program.




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Productive Insights (PI) offers valuable productivity related content to busy people who want to win back a few hours each week. It also discusses mindfulness in daily life which is aimed at creating a deeper sense of purpose and meaning in everyday activities.

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