Firefighting

IT ALL HAPPENS BY “MAGIC”

Issue 2 and Volume 159.

BY RICHARD B. GASAWAY Periodically, I like to take stock in all the accomplishments my department achieves. Personally, it gives me a great deal of pleasure to reflect on all the things we do, and it’s important that the members see the list of accomplishments so they can feel good about their contributions toward providing and improving on emergency services. One disappointing thing about taking inventory of our successes is realizing that a very small number of firefighters do the majority of the work. This is known as the “Pareto Principle” or the “80:20 Rule.” In 1906, Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto created a mathematical formula to describe the unequal distribution of wealth in his country, observing that 20 percent of the people owned 80 percent of the wealth. Applied to work, it means that 80 percent of the work is done by 20 percent of the people. If the Pareto…

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