headphones resting on a closed book

The Pareto Principle Applied to Business Books: Listen First, Read Later

Are you tired of slogging through lengthy business books, only to find a handful of valuable insights? You’re not alone. Many readers find these books disproportionately long compared to the knowledge they offer. But what if there’s a more efficient way to extract value from these books?

The Power of Interviews

Most authors promote their books through media tours, often appearing on podcasts. These interviews are a goldmine of insights. A well-prepared interviewer, having read the book, will discuss its key themes with the author. You’ll find in-depth conversations on platforms like Tim Ferris’s podcast.

The 80/20 Rule in Action

By listening to these interviews, you can grasp the main points of the book. A 1.5-hour interview might give you 80% of the book’s content, saving you hours of reading time. This is the Pareto principle in action: 80% of effects come from 20% of causes.

Read or Not to Read

If the interview piques your curiosity, you’ll know that reading the book is likely to be time well spent. But if you’ve gained enough from the interview, you’ve saved yourself potentially hours of reading time.

This approach isn’t perfect. An interview won’t capture all the nuances of a book. Some insights may only reveal themselves through a thorough read. But if you’re looking to maximize your learning efficiency, this strategy could be a game-changer.

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