The 365 Commitment

Pay for What You Value

People will pay money, or at least transfer and trade resources, for something that they value. The more value they attribute toward something, the more money they will pay. It is amazing that this very simply principle is largely ignored. I am curious as to why? We ignore this in sales, frequently. We also ignore this in our own personal lives. Interestingly enough, we tend to spend the most money on what we value the most. Often we pretend to value one thing, and yet we spend most of our money on something else. You may lie to yourself and try to fool others into thinking you value something, but everyone knows what you really value by where you spend your resources (time, money).

This human principle is worth investigating. It is the secret to unlocking many secrets that appear ellusive. What should I focus on? What should I do? Where should I spend my time? What path should I take? All these questions might be easier answered if you were honest with yourself about what you value the most, and what you think other people value.

The most uncomfortable realization is to find out that you receive compensation according to how much your employer values what you are doing for them and what you value yourself at. This is a interesting balance that often times gets out of whack. They are not paying YOU. They are paying what you are giving them. They transfer money to you in return for the value that you provide and / or return. If you are not getting paid what you want or expect to get paid, always look first at the value that you provide. Is this value unique? Can it be easily obtained? Often times the secret to uncovering why you are not getting compensated what you want is to take a close look at what value you are providing. Sometimes it is a manner of showing or demonstrating that they are getting value, and thereby helping them match compensation transfer to perceived value. However, most times, they are paying you exactly for the value being delivered. The hard part is for you to accept that. You either need to produce something more valuable, or find someone who does value what you provide more than the current person that you are working for. Unfortunately, the latter is rarely an option. I have learned that what we produce has an intrinsic value and everyone seems to come to the same perception of how much that is worth over time.

However, that is not the only piece of this equation. I would say figuring out the value behind what you produce is the easier part of this equation. The hard part is accepting what value you think you can produce. We tend to self fulfill this. If you are a 50K per year person in your mind, then you will be a 50K per year person. No matter what job you take, what value you produce, you will accept 50K a year for it because that is what you believe you are worth regardless of value transfer. There are 50K, 100K, 500K, 1M, 5M or more type of people in this world. Now it can be hard to be a 1M per year person who cannot find someone willing to transfer that amount of money in return for the value that they provide. They may need a good reality check, because if they are producing 500K of value, and wanting 1M in transfer – then they will be waiting a long time and find themselves generally anxious all the time. However, I would rather be the 1M thinker than the 50K thinker. At least I value what I think I am capable of and that is always a better place to start.

Is your success limited by what you think you are capable of, or perhaps worthy of? Absolutely. Take it from me. I have had both scenarios happen frequently. A person that thinks they are worth more than I am willing to pay for the value they provide and the opposite, I am willing to pay more for their value then they think they are worth. The latter is the more frequent. Someone will look across the table and sheepishly ask for 100K when I was wiling to pay 250K. It is amazing how we tend to not value our own worth. It is probably our greatest barriers as humans.

Guy Reams

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