Factors of Disproportionate Influence Can Screw You Or Radically Accelerate Your Success

Disproportionate Influence

When I got started in business the second time I have a distinct memory of sitting in a car thinking to myself I could fail but no one could ever take what I learned away from me.

It was in that moment I decided to dedicate my efforts to what has become an 11+ year fascination with how to create massive financial and business success predictably fast.

In other words why do some people end up as deca-millionaires, centi-millionaires, or even billionaires while others in business do not?

More importantly how can we replicate the big successes?

My first major discovery was you could accelerate success and predictability by identifying and focusing on the essentials.

The second major breakthrough was you could further accelerate this success and predictability by learning and applying the correct sequence.

But nothing was truly as significant as the gradual discovery of factors of disproportionate influence, which probably make success seem extremely unpredictable to anyone who doesn’t understand them, causes us to make a lot of mistakes and also does more than anything else to accelerate success.

It is so significant our work in Richucation has flowed to be dominated by these three things with the highest focus and the biggest lessons we can teach in this area of factors of disproportionate influence.

What Are Factors of Disproportionate Influence?

To understand what these are it helps to understand the landscape of achieving success.

Success is essentially the result of applying the Dreamlife Ratio over time. In other words, minimizing your costs in the pursue of success and maximizing how much each input moves you towards success.

To understand this, it’s perhaps easiest to look at a particular goal or objective let’s say communicating with someone to get them to buy from you.

When working on communicating with that person there are many factors that make a difference starting with for example how you are perceived.

How you’re perceived will have a massive number of factors in itself:

  • How you’re dressed
  • What others say about you
  • How you approached them
  • Your tone of voice
  • Your body language
  • Your race
  • Your height
  • Your age
  • Your attractiveness
  • Your words
  • Etc. etc. etc.

This is true of absolutely anything in the world.

In moving from point A to point B there are many forces exerting themselves on you and the environment.

People who start studying success often catalogue many of these things and start looking for ways to improve them and in the process they often cannibalize success.

Say what?

If they are working on improving success factors how could this cannibalize success?

Herein lies how people can get screwed or can radically accelerate their results.

See, we’ve got a limited amount of results to use as inputs. These resources include our time, attention, focus, intelligence, etc. so we’ve got to make the best use of those resources possible if we want to be successful at a high level quickly.

This is where understanding factors of disproportionate influence comes in.

Not all factors have equal weighting.

What does this mean?

The amount of influence each has isn’t the same.

Think about it like trying to balance a scale and you’ve got a whole bunch of rocks you can place on the one end to do so.

Not all the rocks are the same size or the same weight so which ones you choose makes a big difference.

Where so many people go wrong is they start focusing on small rocks and consume their resources.

If you want to be successful you need to determine, which are the big rocks.

It Goes Beyond Simple Input vs Output Ratios Though

Simple input vs output often gets characterized by the 80/20 principle and the 80/20 principle works well where relevant though doesn’t work when you’re overlooking essentials or sequence.

In a sense you might say the essentials and the sequence can be a big part of a proper 80/20 analysis.

Factors of disproportionate influence are similar to but extend the 80/20 principle.

How come?

Because generally these are factors working for you or against you and their influence is so great as to render many of the other factors either inconsequential or close to it.

This for or against piece is extremely important because often people get the factors of disproportionate influence wrong and then it destroys any chances they have with the other less impactful areas. Whereas, you still get progress in an 80/20 model.

In this sense, the factors of disproportionate influence extend the essentials.

Consider the following metaphor, which shows how most people approach success.

Say you’re driving from one city to another. Arriving there is success.

What factors will influence your results?

There’s a million forces at place such as wind resistance, friction on the road, traffic, temperature, visibility, etc.

However, in most cases only a very small number of factors will be at play in part because of thresholds and in part because of minimal levels of influence.

For example, you’d be a fool to pay attention to wind or temperature because although these will affect your gas mileage they’ll have a comparatively minor influence on the overall outcome.

What is much more likely importance are your direction, quality of the road, and propulsion of the vehicle.

You need to consider the essentials of course such as having enough gas, tires that will work, etc.

You’ll need to consider the sequence of directions where to turn etc.

But those are essentials not huge influencers in the quality of the outcome so long as they are checked.

In other words, the factors of disproportionate influence are mostly quality of the road and force of propulsion of the vehicle.

You can spend a lot of time improving little things like visibility, temperature, etc. but notice how you can only improve those so much and they have diminishing returns.

By contrast you have a massive ability to improve the propulsion of the vehicle (force, speed, durabilitly) with comparatively minor diminishing returns.

These are the factors of disproportionate influence.

The road works against you if it doesn’t work for you and if the propulsion is working against you well…traffic might fit into a similar category.

Keep in mind a factor that’s decisive up to a point isn’t always decisive after that point, usually following a sequence though not always. This is another reason people get thrown off.

Where Does This Leave Us?

When pursuing success in a field, any field whether sports, investing, marketing, relationships, etc. put effort into identifying the factors of disproportionate influence.

What you’ll find is many situations that didn’t make sense previously make a lot of sense when you realize some factors are overwhelming in their influence.

In fact, generally these factors are so decisive they make those other factors almost irrelevant.

For example, a great artist with horrible social skills might thrive because people are willing to tolerate their poor behaviors to work with their genius.

Someone with great connections might get a job without any resume or cover letter or reference checks.

A product everyone loves and wants will sell well even though the people selling it have poor sales skills.

The list goes on.

In the journey to success there is no greater shortcut than factors of disproportionate influence.

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