What do you value?
Are those things worth enough to you to make the necessary sacrifices for? If not, then perhaps you do not value them as highly as you may think.
Riding in the car, I had to remove my sunglasses and looked for a good place to set them. On the dashboard, they could slide around and get scratched, just as they could if I put them in the glovebox or even in my bag. I began to think about how concerned I was about the sunglasses in relation to their value. They weren’t very expensive and I’d had them for over a year.
I started to think about how often we are concerned about things of little value. We often spend more emotional energy on things than they are really worth. If we spend our money on “stuff” that has little or no real value or importance, it is easy to fall into this trap of becoming overly concerned about things instead of spending our emotional energy on things that are really much more important.
A few years ago I had a talk about value with a student at my dojo who was expressing some dissatisfaction with it. He wanted to put in minimum effort, pay minimum fees, and was still always the first in line when there was something to collect for free. He was expressing an “entitlement mentality”, thinking that he deserved something without putting anything into it. I was paying almost 1,000 times as much as he was in monthly training fees at the time because I was training more and going to more expensive classes. He lived half an hour away from the dojo, and didn’t seem to appreciate that people were coming from all over the world to study these martial arts, and making some big sacrifices to do so. After our talk about the value of the training, he decided it was worth it to stick with it, and is still a member of the dojo today.
What do you value?
Are those things worth enough to you to make the necessary sacrifices for? If not, then perhaps you do not value them as highly as you may think. We so often spend a dis-proportionate about of time and energy on things that we don’t really value compared to those that we say we do.
In business as well, often people forget about value and turn their business into simply an attempt to get as much money as possible for as little as possible. Employees, too, often have the attitude that they will only put in the minimum required effort to get paid – another example of the “entitlement mentality”. This attitude often means that they are not doing what they enjoy doing, and in effect have become slaves of their employer. They are simply working for money and not for any sense of personal pride or satisfaction.
A healthy business attitude is one where the business takes pride in producing a high-quality product or service for its customers, with the understanding that it will be fairly compensated for the value that it produces. The best employees work out of a sense of enjoyment and fulfillment in their job, and of course the paycheque then comes in as a natural result. Such employees are not only the most beneficial to the company, but they are the most personally satisfied themselves as well.
Question for the day:
Do you work out of a sense of pride in the value of the service that you are providing?
(Comments to the original version of this post can be found here.)