Something that seems to be spreading like wildfire throughout the “entrepreneur world” at the moment is “make sure you value your time”.
I hear it all the time in some form or another, things like; “Make sure that you charge” “You can’t do that for free” “Are they paying you for this work?”
Valuing your time is a great concept, I mean, if no one put a monetary value on their time then no one would be paid for anything. People do it without realising what they’re doing; you wouldn’t work in a bank or call centre for free, however, working for yourself and building a great reputation and business doesn’t quite work in the same way.
Making a decision to not do something because you might not get an hourly rate that you plucked from thin air is a dramatic mistake, especially in the early years of a business where you’ll be building your contacts, showing people what you’re capable of, and, if you’re doing it right, giving a lot of your time for free!
Over the years I have given so much of my time away for free and continue to do so today, most of the time that I give, I don’t “bill” for, however, what I do have, is a business that has raving fans. I have what I believe to be an untouchable reputation, especially in the property industry. I have people who want to work with me all over the UK because they believe in my ethos and my way of working! Money can not buy that! (No matter how much you have).
Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Ok Dan that’s great, so how do you get paid?!” Which is a fair question and here’s the answer.
The reason I am successful is because of the value I add to other people. At the start of my journey, I built value in my time by giving away so much of it. Remember that “magic penny” song in primary school. “It’s just like a magic penny, hold it tight and you won’t have any, lend it spend it and you’ll have so many…” Well, that’s what happened!
I worked for a long time without making much money, I did favours for everyone, I was the person that people could rely on, and I just got by financially. Then a shift happened, and you’ll know when you get there, the value that you’ve given out begins to come back to you. People think of you first when they have a “deal” or “business venture” because you’ve been so reliable in the past and never let them down.
This is why it’s important to point out that you should add value to everyone (not just the people you think at the time can add value to you!)
Going into anything thinking “how much can I gain?” Is the wrong way to look at anything, you need to be thinking “how much can I give?”
Another reason for this, which is overlooked, is not to take life so seriously! Constantly thinking about how much money you can make from any situation has got to be hard work!
You’re not enjoying the journey through whatever it is you’re doing. If you can add value to other people and not be expectant of anything in return, it makes you feel good, it’s a fulfilling experience.
How much more fun is that?!