That is an excellent question for leaders. Your organization’s size or responsibility will likely give you the answer. In most cases, you can’t give time equally. In simple terms, in my view, fair isn’t equal.

As leaders, we must be jealous of how we use time and with whom. We must be careful not to treat time like we will never run out of it. It isn’t infinite. It is finite, and we are in control.

You are likely familiar with the so-called 80/20 Rule—The Pareto Principle. An Italian economist developed the idea in the early 20th century. He observed a pattern that naturally occurred in nearly every aspect of life—from landowners to sales results. For example:

  • 20% of a sales force close 80% of the sales.
  • 20% of the products return 80% of the revenue.
  • 20% of the population possesses 80% of the wealth.
  • 20% of the congregation gives 80% of the offerings.

There are many more; the list can go on. You get the point. Obviously, the stats may vary. However, you can examine almost anything and find the pattern.

So, leaders, the big question is, “Who should get your time?”

I’m arguing for your Top 20%. You can decide how you will determine who they are. Again, let me stress fair isn’t equal. If they are the top producers, they have earned your attention, they have earned you connecting with them, and they have earned you listening to them and providing resources to help them grow and get better.

To be clear, I am not advocating ignoring the 80%. After all, the group could have a future 20% er. I suggest that another team member connect with the 80%. There is likely a mentoring opportunity with folks in the 80%. So, don’t neglect them.

The bottom line is, as a leader, we must INVEST OUR TIME where we will receive a better ROI. I’m betting on the 20%. How about YOU?