How Much Time Should You Allocate To Wild Bets?

I was listening to Eric Schmidt interview with Tim Ferris when Tim asked him on how Google manages its resources:


Tim Ferriss: Could you describe or explain what the 70-20-10 model is? If that’s the right term to use.

Eric Schmidt: That’s correct. So this was Sergey’s idea. And the question was: how do we organize our resources in terms of core things, new things, and experimental things? So Sergey — and we had an offsite with the whole management team, I still remember. And Sergey got up on the board and he did some math. He’s a brilliant mathematician, and at the end of the math he said, “The right answer is 70-20-10. 70% on your core business, 20% on adjacent or nearby things, and 10% on wild bets.” And he said that, “All of these numbers are right, you need the 70% because you need the revenue, the revenue growth. You need the 20% because you need to extend your franchise, and you need the 10%, which is crucially important for the things that you will want to do five or 10 years from now.”


And then a question popped in my head. Can we apply this concept to personal resources (i.e., time)? For example, we spend 70% on the stuff we know that makes us an income, 20% on nearby things and 10% on the field you like to get into or stuff you are doing for the future? (Getting a master/Nanodegree/side hustle)


Not sure if this can be applied on a personal level. One of the challenges would be how to focus. Also, I think on a personal level the percentage would be 70 – 80% on core business (typically your day job) and 10-20%  on side projects (wild bets).

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