Pareto Purchasing

Written By: Lance Piatt

I have much to be thankful for.  Often this means going through all the stuff that has accumulated in my memory banks, databases, family archives and images.  When it comes to having a family business for over 25 years… you realize that you must take a stand on things.

  • Govern your borders and those that are responsible for enforcing peace within those borders
  • Always look for expansion…
  • The buck always stops with the king.

And unless the king understands what is happening outside of his “house”… he could be losing everything he had right under his nose. For many of us, this happens on a regular basis.  Wisdom in leading people is never easy, but in time – worth it’s weight in “gold”.

Fortunately, I had a couple of 2 x 4s to the head and I got wise, so when it came time for me to answer a few questions about what is important to not just about my business (but the general populace as well), I found that “while people love service, only some are willing to pay for it”.  This is just human nature.

Pareto efficiency:
  • It is a minimal notion of efficiency.
  • It does not necessarily result in a socially desirable distribution of resources.
  • It makes no statement about equality, or the overall well-being of a society.
  • It is one of the greatest “suggestions” to have ever hit life and society!

Many understand this as the 80-20 rule. It is all about weaknesses and constraints; 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.  So for the purchasing kings of state…understanding Pareto Purchasing is important,  and means that optimizing 20% of the work, gear, knowledge, etc… will give you 80% of what you are needing to see as results.

So if you are using an MA system, will 20% of that system get you 80% of the effects you need?  It should.  If you are doing a gear cache list and you were to properly identify what your most important pieces of gear are… you are in for a huge awakening!  And friends, this will be good for all sorts of reasons.  Why?  Because you having been asking the wrong questions.  I will get into this in future posts, podcasts and video training modules. But for now, you should start from the basics.

I love the quote from Princess Bride “what I wouldn’t give for a holocaust cloak”…  (for those who have seen the movie), the other two are looking at obviously being outnumbered and about to be slaughtered.  However, the one who understands what constraints are and how they are meant to “turn ashes to joy”… constraints remove barriers of growth by removing elements of needlessness and this would be 80% of what you likely are thinking are.. “musts”.  And I am here to say… “Dream On”.  Good things are about to happen.

So I want bring  a few things into mind for the purchasing gurus in the making…
  1. What is the mission of gear cache?
  2. Analyze the team’s training and effective knowledge base and determine assets and liabilities.  Be honest!
  3. Once assets are understood, remove 80% of it.
  4. What you are left with will be what produces the bulwark of your team.
  5. Buying gear isn’t the expensive part (actually it is the cheapest)… Overhead (labor and staffing are far and away the greatest debt load on budgets). People are never assets until they are indispensable.  Skills improve with focused training and gear amounts to small incremental improvement over time.

To increase the ROI of your team and your personal accountability to the group you must develop The Plan and the means, the what, the why and the how.






Lance Piatt is CEO of Rescue Response Gear Inc. His other ventures include Rigging Lab Academy Inc., Raven Collective Media and Trails 2 The Sea.




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