Berger Leadership Blog

Feb 20, 2015

The 95% rule

Problems

Recently, I read an article about the 95-percent rule. I found it so helpful that I forwarded it to my entire management team. What’s the 95-percent rule?

“It is a simple rule that says 95% of your pain and troubles are caused by your own stupidity,” wrote Tom Hood in a LinkedIn article, quoting a mentor of his. He said once you realize much of your pain is caused by you, you have the freedom and creativity to fix your problems.

Hood says when we face a new problem, our field of vision often narrows to focus solely on the problem and not how we may have contributed to it. When we own our part in it, we get a more complete picture and can begin to creatively see how to solve it.

What do you think of this rule? I like the way it makes me think about how I may have helped cause this mess; all causes identified, I can do a better job finding a solution. As leaders, our responses to situations affect not just us, but everyone around us. If we can accept responsibility for our part, our problem-solving skills will rise to the top and, hopefully, guide others on our team.