There are books that help tie everything together and this is one of them. This is an easy-to-read history of the idea of corporate strategy, which, in fact, turns out to be a relatively new idea, going back only a few decades. Author Walter Kiechel chronicles the impact of strategy titans such as Boston Consulting Group, McKinsey and Michael Porter (who the Harvard Business School faculty voted to deny promotion to assistant professor).
What is missing is a description of the strategy in the non-profit space. While certainly not as developed as in the corporate space it has grown over the past few decades.
In reading this book I was struck that ideas that we consider obvious today were radical only a few decades ago. And it makes me wonder — what are the “obvious” concepts of the future that we are currently resisting?
Yesterday I was working on a proposal for a client. I completed nearly all of it very quickly. But the last little – the spell check, formatting, and other little items to get it ready to send out took much more time than I anticipated. This always happens and it always frustrates me. And then I realized “This is the Pareto Principle!” You are probably thinking – what is the Pareto Principle?
As the image above* shows, the Pareto Principle basically says that 20 percent of your effort results in 80 percent of your output. That has huge implications for individuals and organizations. What is it that you are doing in the “productive 20 percent?” Can you increase it? And can you decrease the “unproductive 80 percent?” What are the time-wasters and policies that you can eliminate?
It all starts, as is the case with so many things, with close observation of what you and your organization are doing…
* Image Source: http://www.exponentialprograms.com/professional/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/Pareto-Principle.gif