The Pareto principle also called the 80/20 rule, states that for many outcomes, roughly 80% of consequences come from 20% of causes. In other words, a small percentage of causes have an outsized effect. This concept is important to understand because it can help you identify which initiatives to prioritize so you can make the most impact.

Write out the top 3-5 causes with the highest impact from the “FREQUENCY, SEVERITY, FEASIBILITY, IMPACT” table. Addressing the root(s) of these top causes first will provide the greatest benefit for the quality improvement investment.

Assessing Questions

  • Have we determined root cause(s)?
  • Do actions need to be taken to ensure that other potential causes do not create unwanted effects?
  • Have the root causes been reviewed with other employees for feedback/potential problems?
  • Do we have the right team members for the next step?