Business: 20% Mechanics, 80% Psychology

From the desk of Kamahl Barhoush, Peak Performance Business Coach


It was 1896 when Vilfredo Pareto first suggested that “80% of the land in Italy was owned by 20% of the population”.  Then, in 1941, a Polish Engineer and later management consultant named Joseph Juran stumbled across this saying and started to look at its application to engineering.

As it turns out, by solving 20% of the faults in the engineering world, 80% of the failures could be avoided.

Over the years, mathematicians, engineers, financiers and management gurus not only noticed the trend, they discovered that if they used the 80/20 theory to tell them what to focus on, they would bring about better research, more accurate results, higher profits and less down time in production, to name a few.

So how does this apply today?

Well, it works in many, many facets.

Business owners can almost guarantee that 80% of their income comes from the top 20% of their clients (the actual number from Harvard is 82/18).

Tech giants such as Google use the 80/20 rule daily.  They have worked out that the top 20% of tech issues reported by customers equate to over 80% of the crashes and downtime of websites.

So how does Psychology and Mechanics come into the equation?

Firstly, Mechanics… the 80%.

Simply put, there’s nothing new under the sun.

Whatever you are doing in your business, it has been done before.  It can be argued that even the newest of new principles are merely extensions or combinations of previously thought ideas (which were combinations of previous ideas, ad nauseum).

This is an interesting concept, especially for “first to market” companies, but while the widget may look different, the way it’s packaged up and sold to the consumer in the ‘business’ model, is essentially the same strategy that the Babylonians were doing in their souks 5000 years ago.

The mechanics of business are essentially the same.  Customer has needs and wants, your product satisfies the need.  You buy the needed item at $x, you sell it to the customer at $x + %.

Of course there are many nuances within this theory, but you get the picture.

So if there’s nothing new under the sun, and if business has essentially been the same for 5000 years (even in the computer age the same rules apply), why do business owners keep trying to reinvent the wheel?

Or perhaps their intention isn’t to reinvent the wheel, but their actions of attempting to work it out for themselves is ludicrous… insanity even.

If your tooth aches and wobbles, what do you do?

Do you try some pliers… maybe a hammer… perhaps you jam toothpicks all around it and run up against a brick wall?

Of course not.  You go to the person who knows what to do, has done it many times before, and can solve your problem in the fastest time, with the most desirable outcome.

Note also, that you may know about dentistry and have the ability to learn it… but you still don’t run off and do 6 years of Dental school to fix your own tooth.  Instead, you leverage off the time spent learning by the other person (the dentist).

Business is no different.

Smart business owners leverage off the skills and time spent by those that came before them.

Going into business and then studying marketing, then studying finance, then studying sales, then studying product awareness, laws of diminishing returns, advanced management theory, cash flow forecasting, legal principles… literally thousands of topics… is crazy, time consuming, ineffective and debilitating!

The mechanics of how to run a business are already well established… as a business owner, the best thing you can do is go to those that have spent their time studying their area of expertise, so that you don’t have to.

As a Peak Performance business coach, when teaching the mechanics of business, I draw on my lineage as a 4th generation business owner, and builder of businesses since my first venture at the age of 14.

Every SUCCESS I’ve had in business is what I draw on to teach the MECHANICS of what you must do, and when, in setting up, running and growing your business.

So what about Psychology?

Every FAILURE I’ve endured over nearly 30 years of business (and learning from the generations before me), have a real impact psychologically.

Its getting back up, bigger, faster, stronger, from each of the failures, that we learn the psychology of success.

How do you react when the chips are down?

What do you feel when customers leave, council changes laws that affect your business, the website goes down seconds before a major launch, or any other of the millions of things that are out of our direct control?

Our Psychology gets us out of bed.

Our Psychology keeps us going when things go wrong.

Our Psychology keeps us focused (or distracted).

Our Psychology determines our Attitude, our Attitude determines our Actions and our Actions determine our Results.

80% of your success as a business owner stems from your psychology, your mindset, your belief system… call it what you will.

The rest is just mechanics.

This is the exact reason why two identical business can open next door to each other, with identical marketing, identical products and identical profit margins… yet one will thrive while the other struggles to survive.

It’s the business owner, and how they allow themselves to think, feel and act that makes the difference.

So what is the key takeaway for you?

Simply put, start working with 2 people in your business right away:

(1) Someone who understands the MECHANICS of business and can lay it out for you step-by-step

(2) Someone who is a master in the art of Peak Performance PSYCHOLOGY for business owners.

Obviously these 2 points are my area of expertise, and I’d love to be that person for every business owner out there… but I’m not for everyone (a little too opinionated and ‘honest’ for some!)… but please… PLEASE… if you’re in business, find yourself a coach with a proven track record and stop trying to pull those teeth yourself.

I don’t care if it’s not me… just make it SOMEBODY!

Best of luck on your journey!

Live Extraordinary!


P.S. When you are ready, here are 3 different ways to have the next level conversation with us about where to take your business…

1) Access our 4-part e-series outlining exactly what to focus on, and when in your business. You can access it free here:

2) Get the inside info on our “$100k in 90 Days” Incubator program… Delivered in powerful, habit forming, daily lessons. Small business owners can literally follow this system step-by-step to greater profits and a scalable, systemised business.

3) Ready for rapid acceleration (and prepared to implement like a mofo?), let’s discuss what a 1-1 coaching package would look like for you in your business. Schedule a call here as soon as you’re ready…

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