Goal Setting & The 80/20 Principle — 18 Ways To Apply This Principle And Change Your Life

Strangely, this week, I found myself explaining the 80/20 principle to everyone I know. Though this principle is well-known by leaders, it is rarely applied. Leaders around the globe get flooded with information, sometimes more than they can handle. However, they have to make swift decisions and keep their most important objectives in mind.

To extract value and positivity in every situation, to improve our daily life, our institutions, our efficiency, our processes, our achievements, it is detrimental to understand the 80/20 Principle.

Wondering how to generate goals and focus on the most important ones using the 80/20 Principle?

Goal Setting & The 80/20 Principle

What Is The 80/20 Principle?

The 80/20 Principle is actually known as the Principle of Imbalance, the Principle of Least Effort or the Pareto Law, uncovered in 1897 by Vilfredo Pareto, an italian economist. In the 19th century, in England, Pareto noticed that 80% of the wealth and income was accumulated by only 20% of the population.

Furthermore, Pareto remarked that the wealth was not evenly distributed and that not only wealth was distributed in this manner. The Pareto Principle was consistently reproducible in different countries, in different times and with different sets of data.

The Pareto Principle :

  • has been justified by Professor Zipf who demonstrated that 70% of marriages happened to people living 30% within each other.
  • has been used by Joseph Moses Juran during the industrial revolution, in Japan, in order to improve the quantity, the reliability and the value of customer goods.
  • is illustrated in every cause to effect relationship. For example,
    • 20% of employees or customers are responsible for 80% of the company profits.
    • 20% of criminals commit 80% of the crimes.
    • 20% of your clothes in your closet will be worn 80% of the time.
    • 80% of our achievements happen in 20% of our time.

According to Richard Koch, author of The 80/20 Principle The secret of achieving more with less, the principle either requires 80/20 Analysis or 80/20 Thinking:

  • 80/20 Analysis: Before taking action, Prior analysis of the non linear relationship between cause and effort. This analysis is time-consuming but more detailed.
  • 80/20 Thinking: Before taking action, intuitively identify what is most important, then verify the usefulness of the 80/20 principle in the given situation. This is faster.

Why It Will Change Your Life

Generally, the 80/20 is used to prioritize, to set goals, to achieve more in less time and with less effort. It can be applied in business, in life, in any social grouping and in various cultures. For instance, in business, it helps you identify the areas where you lose time, money and where it is possible to cut your losses.

To exploit its full potential, the 80/20 principle exerts us to:

  • Spot the most important and ignore the massive unimportant.
  • Understand that every action doesn’t lead to the same outcome or even lead to one.
  • Use and work on strengths rather than weaknesses.
  • Seek shortcuts instead of taking long detours.
  • Gain more control over our lives and thoughts, our work and career selection.
  • Relax, work less and “target a limited number of very valuable goals”.
  • Transform your work habits.
  • Target a number of valuable goals.
  • Develop a healthy business strategy.
  • It is always possible to improve your skills.
  • Multiply what is effective.
  • Apply it in business to reduce costs and to generate more revenue.

Putting The Principle Into Practice To Set Tangible Goals

The 80/20 is for those who want more of their life, for the ambitious, for the goal-oriented and for the self-disciplined. Being ambitious is not synonymous to bein overworked, busy, or sacrificing yourself. To harness the 80/20 Principle, to make your dreams more feasible and to grow exponentially in any field:

  1. Discover what you are more enthusiastic about in life.
  2. Avoid investing the same amount of energy in everything that you pursue. Be strategic and identify the best 20% and invest 80% of your effort.
  3. Most people believe that goals are wishes, mere desires that they don’t believe they can achieve. Get clarity and be specific on what you want. There is no unrealistic goals.
  4. Make your goals big. The bigger the goal, the bigger the impact on your life, the higher the motivation and the longer you can maintain the vision.
  5. Make sure that these goals are self-imposed.
  6. Keep your goals simple. Simple is rare but simple is effective. Choose simplicity first. For example, identify the simplest and most standardized product, nurture the simplest 20%, make it high quality and eliminate the rest. In addition, simple businesses are better than complex ones because they deliver better value and perform better.
  7. Find ways to make your goals achievements fun. Avoid spending time on easy tasks and tune out distractions. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe said it best: “Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least”.
  8. Avoid focusing on the negative and waiting for a positive outcome. It is necessary to let go of the customers, employees, products and processes that don’t bring profits
  9. Know your values and purpose. Then, align your goals with your values in order to feel more fulfilled.
  10. Analyze the reasons and the costs of these goals beforehand. Applying the 80/20 Analysis will indicate whether or not you would pursue them.
  11. Write down your goals for various parts of your life (career, work processes, leadership styles, lifestyle, health) and accomplish the most important goal. These goals must have value. Writing down goals allows you to solidify them subconsciously and to get everything into place.
  12. Write down what you really want and write it down as if you are writing it from the future, having already achieved your goal.
  13. Work on this one goal all the time. 20 Percent of your activities will result in 80 percent of our results. It is  a known fact that you shouldn’t put all your eggs in a basket. Instead, choose the basket to put all your eggs into.
  14. Review these goals on a daily to keep your commitment to yourself.
  15. Divide your goals into smaller steps to make your plan more coherent and easier to achieve.
  16. Identify the obstacles, the knowledge needed, the relationships that you have to build to achieve your goals.
  17. Measure your progress with parameters like money, time, energy, emotional investment. You can even create a deadline. If you miss a deadline, create another one.
  18. Share your goals with those that will implement it.

Last Words Of Advice!

Don’t beat yourself or your team up for not realizing all your goals. Have you used the 80/20 principle and what have you noticed? What is one of the goal that you want to accomplish?

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

Goal Setting & The 80/20 Principle

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The Importance Of Trust In Leadership

The consequences of distrust are significant. It increases employees turnover and employees don’t volunteer ideas like they should, question every single move  of the leader, undermine his or her decisions.

Nobody wants to go to work where they constantly have to look behind their shoulder, where they cannot share knowledge freely, where they cannot speak up in meetings, where they have to watch their every single word.

We end up losing confidence in yourself, not wanting to contribute at work, preserving ourselves, acting against our core values, lacking energy, refusing to invest in people, felling alone and always on the look out.

Wondering how to build or repair trust in leadership and in the workplace?

Trust In Leadership

What is trust?

Trust is an emotional bond, a connection between two people who is developed through repeated interactions and that provides comfort and stability. It is the foundation of all relationships and according to Patrick Lencioni, in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team it is  the most important factor in team cohesion.

Furthermore, trust is reciprocal, subjective, takes time to build but can be destroyed in a matter of seconds. It is not granted by a title nor by a position but is necessary to work and to share knowledge. Trust is empowering, improves overall employees motivation, productivity, wellbeing in the workplace and corporate culture.

Trust is detrimental to leadership because leaders have the power to make decisions that can impact their team and their livelihood.

Detecting and understanding untrustworthy leaders

Trustworthy leaders drive success, put employees at ease, have their employees best interest at heart. Trustworthy leaders care about their own contributions, about the impact of their decision, about their people and regularly show appreciation. They are fair and respectful, are credible and communicate openly.

Nevertheless, some leaders exhibit negative behaviors that make them seem untrustworthy. Because, trust is subjective and because followers model these behavior, it is compulsory that leaders identify what they are doing wrong and immediately correct themselves.

Below are different scenarios where leaders are perceived to be untrustworthy and the respective explanation to their behavior.

Scenario #1

Some leaders are naturally reserved and secretive. Unfortunately, they come off as being snobs, defensive, or as having a personal agenda. People generally think the worst when they don’t know what their leader is thinking.

Scenario #2

Some leaders are introverts and minimize social interactions. To their team, they are perceived to either be standoffish, weirdos. This can open the door to a lot of misunderstandings and conflicts.

Scenario #3

Some leaders speak very little because they either believe that the topic doesn’t deserve much conversation, don’t enjoy speaking, don’t feel the need to explain themselves or they are unable to put their thoughts into words.

Scenario #4

Some leaders adapt their response to their audience and come off as being disingenuous. For example, they would talk frankly in front of their team and sugarcoat things in front of the hierarchy.

Scenario #5

Some leaders are self-serving and don’t care about their employees. They don’t demonstrate respect for their team and can easily step over them.

Scenario #6

Some leaders are arrogant. They feel superior to others all while being insecure, they lack humility and self-awareness, they are unwilling to learn and to grow.

Scenario #7

Some leaders blatantly lie. In some toxic companies, lying is seen as a strength. But this strength is short-termed and create distrust amongst employees.

Scenario #8

Some leaders gossip about their own employees and their own organization. Because most employees are attempting to preserve their jobs, employees tend to fake their true feelings. However, leaders have difficulties noticing the impact of their negative behavior.

Scenario #9

Some leaders are able to shift blame too easily and don’t take responsibility for their action. This leader is afraid of confronting themselves. This makes employees unwilling to take risks and to involve themselves in their job.

Scenario #10

Some leaders play favorites, treat their employees unfairly, take credit for their work, disrespect them, isolate and scapegoat some employees and sabotage others.

Scenario #11

Some leaders underperform or don’t come through on promises. People tend to dismiss those who overpromise and underperform, even if they are talented or competent.

Scenario #12

Some leaders overreact to challenges and under high pressured situations, they give in too easily to their emotions.

How to build trust and maintain it in the workplace?

Placing trust in someone makes us vulnerable to that person who can use this vulnerability to their advantage. However, to create a healthy workplace, it is necessary for leaders to build trust within their team. To do so, you will have to:

  1. Trust yourself in order to make yourself feel confident, competent, to help yourself grow your relationships, to take risks and to face challenges.
  2. Develop your character and learnt to do what is right.
  3. Learn new skills and teach them to others.
  4. Create a safe workplace. Help others express themselves, their ideas, and vent their frustrations. Help employees achieve their goals. Give your employees room to grow their skills and self-esteem by offering them training and coaching.
  5. Appreciate people‘s capabilities and employ them for their strengths.
  6. Give trust to receive trust. However, beware of people who will take advantage of your eagerness to trust. Learn how to detect these toxic individuals and protect yourself from them.
  7. Actively listen to your team without speaking or emitting judgements.
  8. Be open and honest with important company information. Don’t shy away from the truth.
  9. Positively present your thoughts and ideas to your team.
  10. Involve your team in the decision-making process.
  11. Don’t allow communication to break down and don’t withhold any information from your team. misunderstandings are easily created and can decrease trust.
  12. Clarify your employees assignments, roles and measure their progress. For example, give your employees the necessary authority to accomplish their assignments and trust their decisions.
  13. Avoid gossiping like the plague. It may seem fun and you might enjoy the camaraderie but it is unprofessional and unethical. Respect what people have told you in confidence.
  14. Adopt consistent behaviors and expectations on a daily basis. Employees tend to trust leaders who are predictable, who represent the company’s values and missions.
  15. Admit mistakes, acknowledge negative situations and sincerely apologize if necessary. Take responsibility for your actions.
  16. Be reliable. Carry out promises and meet deadlines. Be careful of what you promise to others before you compromise your relationships.
  17. Give and accept constructive criticism to build long-lasting relationships.
  18. Forgive instead of seeking revenge and perpetuating distrustful behavior.

 

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

Confidence Plan — How To Build A Stronger You, Mastering The Practical Skills Of Winning by Tim Ursiny

In Confidence Plan — How To Build A Stronger You, Mastering The Practical Skills Of WinningTim Ursiny believes that building self-confidence does not only rely on positive self-talk, on words of affirmation, on changing our thought patterns or other mental strategies.

To build long-term confidence, Ursiny believes that we also have to develop emotional, behavioral, relational and spiritual strategies.

For Ursiny, confidence is an important factor to fulfilling our dreams, for achieving real success at work and at home, for building and maintaining healthy relationships, for understanding and communicating with others.

Confidence Plan

Recognizing the importance of confidence

Struggling with confidence either means that you suffer from low self-esteem or that you are living, working, breathing in the wrong place. If you have never suffered from lack of confidence, then you have never left your comfort zone.

Needless to say, confidence is the opposite of humility. It is the belief in our abilities to perform, to get results from our performance, in our worth and in our opinion of ourselves.

In addition, we all internal regulator that measures our level of confidence, depending on our successes and failures, that forces us to take action and that can be explained by different factors. We have a level to which we will not allow ourselves to fall or to rise. It is important to identify those levels in order to rewire our expectations and reset our internal regulator.

To recognize the importance of confidence:

  • Learn from adversity. Through resilience, “quality that allows us to pick ourselves back up after experiencing hardship or trauma”, you grow your confidence despite failure.
  • Embrace your past, enjoy your success, get over past failures and learn from your mistakes. People who hide or don’t observe their past tend to repeat the same mistakes and miss out on opportunities.
  • Assess your current abilities, behaviors, habits, blind spots, strengths and weaknesses. Welcome feedback from trusted people around you and make the needed changes.
  • Stay focused on your vision and be optimistic that you are going to get there.
  • Work on your attitude. Attitudes are composed of what we think, how we feel and what we do. And, when all these aspects are aligned, we are more peaceful and more confident. Therefore, to constantly adjust your attitude:
    • Watch your self talk, reward positive thinking and remind yourself of your own competencies.
    • Take time off for yourself, enjoy the company of your friends and family.
    • Practise future behaviors in fictional situations.
  • Identify the motivations for reaching your goals and take the steps to grow.

Challenging personal comfort zones

The way we perceive ourselves or a situation can seriously impact our confidence. To challenge your personal comfort zones:

  • Use different techniques to control your thoughts and to remain present. Some turn to meditation, some to God and others to religion to instill peace of mind.
  • Avoid making snap judgements that create insecurities and that easily lead us into error.
  • Avoid self-fulfilling prophecies and remain optimistic. Sometimes, when we believe that we can achieve something, our subconscious will arrange our actions and behaviors to match that expectation. Believing that good things will come to you will help you live a happier life.
  • Don’t be your own self-critic. Use words of affirmations to motivate you and to reach higher grounds of success.
  • Identify the embarrassing thoughts and seek new ones.
  • Stop negative thoughts from taking root in your mind. For example, use the highly effective rubber band technique:
    • Put a rubber band around your wrist.
    • When negative thoughts come in, snap the rubber band.
    • Tell yourself to stop the thought pattern.
    • Replace the negative thought with a positive one.

Building confidence in failure

Most often, our behavior and emotional response are illogical. To gauge your emotional level of confidence and to gain sight into your emotional core:

  • Evaluate your behavior in stressful situations and your relationship with compliments.
  •  Start journaling.
  • Take responsibility for your feelings about yourself and about how others make you feel, for your successes and failures.
  • Avoid  negative opinions and hypothesis about people and yourself. You will end up attributing negative connotations to every single one of their behaviors and only confirming what you already belive.
  • Don’t allow past hurts to define your future.
  • Use visualization techniques and your 5 senses to deepen your confidence, your emotional core, to increase self-control and resilience.

Understanding the limits of self-confidence

Fears have a knack for decreasing our confidence. To understand the limits of self-confidence:

  • Act more confidently so you can become more confident.
  • Identify what drains you and what fills you up with energy. We usually feel stressed when there are elements out of our control because we feel less powerful than we think we are. To feel better, shift your focus on things that you can control.
  • Identify the goal to grow your already existing confidence. Then, stop and measure your progress.
  • Identify your fears then face your fears by gradually desensitizing and exposing yourself to them. “Confidence is not the absence of fear” but means that “fear has no control over you”.
  • Avoid procrastination. Procrastination tends to intensify our fears.
  • Expose yourself to embarrassment more often.

Building confidence through the 5 approaches

The culture and the people we surround ourselves with have a huge impact on our self-confidence. To grow your confidence through mental, emotional, behavioral, relational and spiritual strategies:

  • Identify people who drain your confidence, that judge your abilities and capabilities. Assess their actions, learn to deal with them effectively or learn to repair the relationships.
  • Find out whether or not you are draining someone else.
  • Create and increase your support system that defines your social identity. In this support system, we feel more comfortable being ourselves.
  • Consider how conflicts impact your confidence. Conflicts are born from prejudices, stereotypes and differences in opinion. Firstly, center yourself around your own opinion in order not to be threatened by someone else’s or to become defensive. Secondly, build relationships that promotes trust and loyalty.
  • Forgive and give back to your community to help you grow.
  • Invite feedback from people you trust and respect.

Transcending self-confidence

To find our higher levels of confidence, we must believe that there is something bigger that us and we must tap into our spiritual being. To transcend your self-confidence:

  • Identify your purpose and higher calling. This way, you won’t accept environments and position that don’t satisfy you or that don’t play to your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Examine how you can bring significance to your work, what you want to be remembered for, that mark you want to leave on earth.
  • Practise what you preach.
  • Develop a deeper relationship with God.
  • Build a personal mission statement.

Review

Confidence Plan — How To Build A Stronger You, Mastering The Practical Skills Of Winning, by Tim Ursiny, is written for those who want a better life for themselves, a more positive vision of life, or to assess their level of confidence. It is also written for those with low self-esteem and for those who struggle with self-confidence.

Confidence Plan — How To Build A Stronger You, Mastering The Practical Skills Of Winning is transformational and can be used in our professional life as much as our personal life. Through his book, through immediate practical exercises, Tim Ursiny seeks to impact people long-term.

Tim Ursiny provides us with timely, implementable exercises that you can work on, on a daily basis. You can work on the exercises in six weeks or you can work at our own pace. It is therefore necessary for you to select the techniques and sections of the book that speak the most to you.

Favorite quote(s)

In any situation where two people are competing with relatively similar skills, the more confident person will always succeed at a greater level.

The way we view a situation can have serious ramifications. Our perceptions will often dictate what we do, how we feel, and how we interact with others.

Our minds are capable of processing a huge amount of information. This is both a plus and a minus concerning whether this information aids us or hurts us.What goes on in our minds has a powerful impact on our confidence and our behavior. Having the wrong stuff in our heads is dangerous to our success.

We cannot control what others say to us, but we definitely can impact and change what we say to ourselves.

One form of conflict is a result of prejudice and stereotypes

No matter how confident we are, no matter how successful we become, no matter how powerful we feel, there is something bigger than us.

Ratings 3/5

Author

Tim Ursiny

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Tim Ursiny

authorTim Ursiny, PhD, is the president and founder of Advantage Coaching & Training. Tim Ursiny is also the Author of the Confidence Plan — How To Build A Stronger You, Mastering The Practical Skills Of Winning.