We sure waste a lot of time, energy and money in our society.
For example, we try to help people who simply are not ready to be helped.
Sales managers frequently invest the majority of their energy trying to help the worst salespeople they’ve got, who, in truth, are doing nothing to help themselves, when they should be helping their top peak performers do even better.
Just as an example, when somebody asks for my advice, but then does nothing different as a result of it, I stop giving it; I may need that breath later.
Successful entrepreneurs fall into this trap dozens of different ways: employing lazy, indolent family members and trying to turn them into something is one very common miss-step.
Spending money trying to convert non-buyers into paying customers is a fool’s errand.
A business owner will spend money developing campaigns to attract masses of customers and then focus the majority of their time and money developing strategies to get more of these non-buyers to consume their product or service.
Yet, here’s the thing…
Too often the 20% of customers that produce 80% of their company’s profit don’t receive near the same energy and resources devoted to them. Businesses waste time on less important matters instead of focusing on the things that can make the biggest difference.
It’s not uncommon to hear a sales person say they spend 80% of their time handling problems and fielding questions from the customers that provide only 20% of their income.
Think about how you spend your day. Most likely you fall into the trap most of society does and find that 20% of your time accounts for 80% of what you achieve.
I’m frequently asked for help with business or marketing problems, but when I start telling the person what they need to do to solve their problems, it becomes apparent they do not want a list of things for them to do nor do they want to work to get better at needed skills; they want me to solve it for them.
It is a bad policy to try to help somebody who is close-minded to it or does not demonstrate any initiative in seeking it.
The core idea of this is what is commonly called the 80/20 Principle. It’s also been referred to as the Pareto Principle (after Vilfredo Pareto (1843-1923) the man who first identified its existence.)
The 80/20 Principle refers to the idea that in order to achieve success, you need to focus on the 20% of your activities that bring you the highest results and eliminate (or delegate) the 80% that bring you little or no reward.
The idea of where and what you should focus your time, money and energy on is something I teach my Titanium Members and private clients about. And fully understanding the 80/20 rule and the power of the hyper-responsive customer, and the immense profitability of small numbers is something you’d be wise to apply in your own business.
This theory carries over to every aspect of life and business.
For instance, in each business endeavor, you only need to rely on a handful of ‘tricks’ to be really successful or effective. Consider McDonald’s advertising for example. While there are dozens of marketing ‘tricks’ they could use, they’ve determined these five strategies are the most effective and only use:
- Discounting for a limited time
- 2-for-1 special for a limited time
- A special item for limited time
- A movie or TV show tie-in toy promotion for a limited time and/or limited availability
- A contest or game promotion for a limited time.
Embroiling yourself in attempting to help those who will not actively partner in the process is neurotic behavior, a fool’s gold rush, to be avoided. And grasping the principle of where to spend your time, money and energy is a money-making secret guaranteed to lead to increased income and golden opportunities.