Why the 80/20 Rule will get us to sustainability faster
Before Christmas, my fifth book, Accelerating Sustainability using the 80/20 Rule, was published. I’m really excited about it as it sets out a manifesto for sustainability practitioners to cast off the chains of unimportant detail that hold us back and really start to make leaps forward.
The 80/20 Rule says that 20% of our efforts deliver 80% of results, so we should focus on that vital 20% and relegate the other 80% – the trivial many – to the ‘nice to have’ tray. Here’s why using the 80/20 rule can help you get to sustainability faster:
- You declutter, getting rid of all the trivial stuff which clogs your to do list – whether to have paper or plastic coffee cups, how to keep your green champions happy, where to source recycled pencils – and focusses your thinking on the actions which will really make a difference.
- You focus your limited resources – personal energy, time, goodwill and cash – on the issues and people which will really make a difference (the video intro above gives a great example of how this works in employee engagement).
- It prevents you implementing dubious ‘solutions’ such as green champions just because everybody else is doing the same, and forces you to justify your efforts to yourself.
- You avoid paralysis by analysis: 80/20 thinking says when you have enough information to act, then act.
- You avoid paralysis by perfection: because 80/20 thinking only targets 80% of the problem, you tend to implement the kind of pragmatic, effective solutions which work but which perfectionists hate.
The 80/20 Rule can feel brutal, even Darwinian, but given the pressing need to address these issues, we need to be a lot more pragmatic and a lot less idealist and get things moving!
Join our webinar on 28 January 2015 to learn more about how the 80/20 Rule can revolutionise your sustainability programme. Click here for more.