A Simple Economic Equation

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Why are the Beatles still popular today, nearly 40 years after they broke up? Nostalgia is a small part (the Baby Boomers still rule the earth)–but the much larger reason is that the music still holds up. The songs the Fab Four created from 1963 to 1969 still sound fresh and exciting today, even if you’ve heard them a thousand times. In other words, the Beatles created something of lasting VALUE.

On a personal level, there are two sides to the economic equation: the value you give, and the compensation you receive. Most of us spend a lot of our time thinking about the second half–the compensation.

“I don’t have enough.”

“How can I get more?”

“Who will give it to me?”

I’d like to suggest that if we spent the majority of our time focusing on the first part of the equation–the VALUE–we’d all be a lot better off. All we have to do is spend a few minutes each day asking one question:

“How can I increase my VALUE?”

If you can truly increase your value to others, they will compensate you richly. It doesn’t happen the other way around. The people who say, “Give me more money and I’ll work harder” have it backwards. Your compensation is a function of your value, not vice versa.

Your compensation equals your value. Increase the value, and you’ll increase your compensation. To put it another way, your rewards will equal your effort. As the Beatles said, much more eloquently:

“And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”


About the Author:

29-time Emmy Award winner and Hall of Fame keynote speaker Bill Stainton, CSP is an expert on Innovation, Creativity, and Breakthrough Thinking. He helps leaders and their teams come up with innovative solutions — on demand — to their most challenging problems.
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