The Personal MBA

Master the Art of Business

A world-class business education in a single volume. Learn the universal principles behind every successful business, then use these ideas to make more money, get more done, and have more fun in your life and work.

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What Is 'Amplification'?

When you make a small change to a scalable system, the results are huge. That's Amplification.

The best way to identify Amplification opportunities is look for things being duplicated or multiplied.

The larger the system, the larger the result of the small change.

Josh Kaufman Explains 'Amplification'

Think of a typical can of soda.

When cans were first used to sell beverages, they were cylindrical, flat-topped, and made of steel. Over time, steel was phased out in favor of aluminum, pull tabs were introduced to make opening easier, and the can was "necked"-tapered slightly at the top.

"Necking" a can has two major effects-first, it makes it easier to drink from, which users like. Second, it reduces the amount of metal necessary to produce a structurally sound can: the walls of a typical beverage can are now around ninety micrometers thick (instead of ~2 millimeters), saving an enormous amount of raw materials.

According to the Can Manufacturer's Institute, approximately 131 billion cans are manufactured every year in the United States. When you multiply the cost savings of modern can designs across billions of cans and several decades, a few very small changes have saved the beverage industry hundreds of billions of dollars.

That's Amplification: making a small change to a system that scales produces a huge result.

The effect of any improvement or system optimization is amplified by the size of the system. The larger the system, the larger the end result.

When McDonald's comes up with a new sandwich, they're not limited to just selling it in one of their stores-they can start selling it in all of their stores around the world. When Starbucks comes up with a new drink, it can be made available to customers in every Starbucks location extremely quickly.

The best way to identify amplification opportunities is to look for things that are constantly Duplicated or Multiplied.

If Starbucks found a way to produce a shot of espresso using fewer coffee beans, it would make a huge difference in the amount of coffee they'd need to buy. If they discovered a way to make that espresso shot more quickly, it would reduce the time it takes to serve a customer and increase the number of customers a single store could serve in an hour.

Scalable systems amplify the results of small changes. Small changes to scalable systems produce massive results.

Questions About 'Amplification'


"In nature, there are neither rewards nor punishment—there are consequences."

Robert G. Ingersoll, political leader and orator


From Chapter 4:

Value Delivery


https://personalmba.com/amplification/



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The Personal MBA

Master the Art of Business

A world-class business education in a single volume. Learn the universal principles behind every successful business, then use these ideas to make more money, get more done, and have more fun in your life and work.

Buy the book:


About Josh Kaufman

Josh Kaufman is an acclaimed business, learning, and skill acquisition expert. He is the author of two international bestsellers: The Personal MBA and The First 20 Hours. Josh's research and writing have helped millions of people worldwide learn the fundamentals of modern business.

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