The 80-20 Home Business Principle

How would you like to have fun, do less, and create more? That is surely something that we think all home based business start-ups would love to hear! So ... before you get started on your home business plans today, take a few minutes to read on and find out more!

Richard Koch, author of The 80/20 Manager explains more about this helpful business advice - and how it can help you run your start-up business more effectively.

He says, 'I won’t bore you very much with the background, which goes back to Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto in 1897.  His idea evolved into the 80/20 Principle, which says that more than 80%  per cent of results usually come from less than 20%  per cent of causes.  

Put more generally: for results, very few things matter, but those few matter a great deal.  So in order to grow your home based business efficiently – find the few things, use them, and forget the rest.

Come with us to find ten ways you can use the Principle for starting up a business, with one quick action hint per ‘way’.

Find the 80-20 success rule for your home based business

Investigating Home Businesses

The idea is you ask vital questions and learn to listen.  Example: Which single powerful idea could turbo-charge my home business? How do I go about starting up my home based business?

Back in 1996, my friend Jamie Reeve worked deep in the bowels of the BBC Strategy department.  He was bored and about to quit.  He decided to take a week out to visit a friend who worked in New York, who was anything but bored – he was having fun constructing an online guide to the Big Apple.  

Jamie suddenly got the idea: Doh! The internet!  Long story short – when he worked out what was wrong with the BBC’s online experiments and took John Birt, the BBC boss, to meet Bill Gates. Result – the launch of BBC Digital, which Jamie undertook.  His career took off like a rocket.

Superconnecting Your Business

Who do you think can help you most in your career – your friends, family, and close colleagues, on the one hand; or, on the other hand, people you vaguely know but don’t see very often?

Trick question, because the answer is the second group.  You see, the people we know best have access to the same information and insight that we do, and not much more.  Whereas people who move in different circles have different information that might just be relevant to your needs.

Moral – go and see people with whom you have a friendly ‘“weak link’” and chat about nothing and everything.  Sooner or later you’ll have a ‘Eureka moment’.

Mentoring For Home Based Businesses

Everyone trying to achieve anything needs a mentor.  Professionals working from home need it most.  Never mind, those entrepreneurs learning about how to start up a home based business! They love mentoring.

Go for the person you really want as mentor, whether it's somebody working in the same field as you, or somebody whose work is completely different, but whose business strategy you admire for starting up a website business, and follow three rules:

Listen carefully.

Ask for help only when it’s really needed.

Give something back to the mentor and make the experience enjoyable.

The Leveraged Home Business Professional

A lever is a simple device to multiply effectiveness.

Just one example – the subconscious.  Experiments show that conscious thought is most effective when there are just a few bits of data to piece together – like following a map.

But the subconscious is what sorts out the really interesting tangled problems.  The subconscious is the model of 80/20 economy – it works away for free and throws up the answer when least expected.

But it requires you to really care about something.  The subconscious only operates on matters you are passionate about.

So, be honest, how much do you care about your start-up business?   Rate it on a 1-10 scale. Unless it’s 10, you won’t have the wonderful lever of the subconscious.  Concentrate only on the few things in your home working that totally engage you when starting up a home based business.

Liberating Your Business Mind

Achievement rests on creativity, which requires freeing yourself from the baggage that blocks creativity.  It also requires knowing the small aspects of your personality that can lead to startling results, and allowing them to surface.

Boring work drives out creative work.  Stop doing anything you find a drag.  If it has to be done, pay someone else to do it.   You can’t afford it?   The truth is you can’t afford not to, if you want stellar results.

The Meaning Seeker

What are you uniquely qualified to do? What kind of home work has meaning for you and not for anyone else in the same way?

Think of great artists.  You can recognize a Van Gogh instantly.  It’s the same for writers, performers and even people in business.  An approach is more valuable when it’s totally personal and nobody else could do the same thing.

Meaning and achievement are inextricably linked.  So it may take you a lifetime to work out what your destiny is, but it will not be time wasted!

The Time Rich Professional

Michael Eisner, the boss of Paramount and then Disney, once boasted that he had only taken one week off in 28 years.

In his first years at Disney he tripled profits.

An analysis showed that all the improvement came from three decisions – he put the Disney animated classics on DVD, he raised theme park prices, and he opened more Disney hotels.

How long did it take him to make those three decisions when he was starting his business?

If you are at all creative, you add the great majority of your value in a small fraction of your time.

So why do all the other stuff?

Keeping Your Business Simple

As David Brooks remarks in his book The Social Animal, people who achieve the most tend to have ‘“a talent for simplification ... to take a complex situation and capture the heart of the matter in simple terms.”’

The problem is – intelligent people love complexity.

And the curse of knowledge is that you are forever making subtle distinctions, and don’t realize the vital, simple thing you know that other people don’t.

The search for simplicity is the search for the ‘core’ – what is the single most important thing?

Forget the rest.

The Lazy Website Business Professional

Do you know many really intelligent hard-working people who’ve never made it to the top in their world?

And others who are laid back and do make the top?

Bertrand Russell told the story of the young man on the grand tour in the 1920s, who came across a dozen beggars in Naples, supine in the shade, doing nothing.  ‘“Who is the laziest of you all?”’ the young man said, ‘“I’m going to give you a coin.”’  Eleven of them jumped up, claiming to me the laziest.  But the coin went to the vagabond still motionless on the ground.

It’s hard for most of us to be lazy.

But lazy people can achieve exceptional results because they have to be selective, and only do the vital things.  Know your passion

They don’t get waylaid by trivia.

Mind you, laziness only works when allied to extreme ambition.  It’s a rare combination, but unbeatable.

The Strategist

The strategist is someone who works out a whole new way that an industry or part of it can be organized.

They have a great idea for starting up a business and – more important – they turn it into reality.

You can only do this if you truly understand the industry and how to add huge value without too much effort.

One good idea a year – or a lifetime – can make all the difference.   Look out for it!


One Last Thing

All ten ways on starting up a home based business have this thinking in common:

How can we achieve BIG goals for our home business with relative ease?

What great result can I achieve to a higher degree, and with less effort, than anyone else?

If you can get there, it’s fun, it’s gratifying, and you’ll do a lot of good.'

The 80/20 Manager  by Richard Koch is published by Piatkus for £13.99 

The iHubbub team are feeling pretty motivated to start running our home businesses more effectively now, so we hope you are too!


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