Saturday, May 29, 2010

What is the most useful bit of advice you've ever been given?

To observe the 80/20 rule, also called the Pareto Principal. Basically that 80% of effect is generated by 20% of a cause.

This was established by an economist as a rule of business: 80% of profits tend to be generated by 20% of customers. 80% of problems tend to be generated by 20% of customers. Thus if you can identify and handle the appropriate 20% accordingly you will increase effectiveness. This is why I no longer do phone consultations.

The rule holds true elsewhere - almost eerie in its universality. 20% of almost any languages vocabulary will allow you to handle 80% of conversations. 20% of the seeds planted in a garden will generate about 80% of the plants that grow. 80% of Crimes tend to be committed by 20% of criminals. 80% of Health Care resources are eaten up by 20% of the population.

If you know where to look for that 20% you can increase profits, reduce hassle, and establish skill competency way faster than if you don't.

Ask me anything


yuzuru said...

"This is why I no longer do phone consultations."

Didn´t follow the logic. Phone consultations were too much of a hastle? why?

Jason Miller, said...

Yes they are a huge time suck and yield less useful info than e-mail does. Unraveling the story from an e-mail is hard enough, it can be almost impossible on the phone.

Having a written record of all communication also helps avoid the "he said/she said" if there is a misunderstanding between you and the client.

In general people are happy to work via e-mail. When people don't want to they almost always tell me "its too complex to write down". Yeah, trust me, you dont want that phone call.

Some `clients will also call over and over again at inopportune times with every single thing that they think is going wrong (somebody cut me off in traffic, your cleaning needs to be stronger!).

I also used the 80/20 rule to ditch most readings. If people just want a reading, I will charge a reasonable rate, but that is not my specialty. My strength lies in doing magic for folks. I do readings for free as part of the process for evaluating if I will take the case.

When clients ask me for a detailed reading before I do a cleansing or protection ritual beyond what I do for free - 90% of the time they really just want me to perpetuate whatever psychic soap opera they are weaving for themselves. I am not interested in impressing people with what I can find out about their past that they already know. I also am not interested in checking out every person that previous workers have told them is working against them.

The 80 20 rule helps me avoid people that are time sucks or just plain crazy. I may miss out on some money here and there, but for the most part I am happy to let those cases pass by.

Jason Miller, said...

Incidentally Phone calls and meetings are huge time sucks in corporate life as well. Avoid them as best you can. 4HWW gives great strategies for doing just that.

The Scribbler said...

Eighty percent of the blogging worth reading is being written by 20 percent of the bloggers.

Jason Miller, said...


Gordon said...

Psychic soap opera - Very apt description.

Takes me right back to when I would supplement my income with readings in college.

People just want to be told that their deadbeat boyfriend will actually change and he really loves them after all.

And they'll keep going to new readers until someone tells them that.

Also: Pareto's Law. Is there anything it can't improve? :)

Devi, The Danforth Village Witch said...

I'm with you 100% on phone readings! I also do all consultations, readings, etc, via email.

For a little while I did in-person readings, but found that because people asked so many peripheral questions about every little thing that was coming up, it didn't allow me to go in-depth with them on the ACTUAL issue. It also REALLY changed the energy in my healing temple, so I discontinued in-person readings (outside of the intuitive hands-on reading that comes with energetic assessments related to healing work).

I find I can get much deeper into the issue, and be much more accurate if I can just go into the "zone" and explore - rather than having to simultaneously juggle a person's nerves, anxiety, doubts, neurosis, etc.

Also, if forced to succinctly describe the issue in an email, it helps people focus on the core problem. Sometimes just doing that activity helps them see things differently. I can help bring out additional info through targeted follow-up questions without getting sidetracked with drama. Then the reading goes sooooo well.

So I totally get you!

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