The Power of Getting Paid Less

By Thomas Hubbard.  
Published on Monday, October 28, 2013

Agreeing to wages below market price should never be internalized. Although disappointing, we know that every market is comprised of highs and lows, and that prices are subject to change with or without notice! It’s the nature of the beast…the part we rarely consider when taking up the great power of getting paid. We generally think of wages in terms of increase. But when discounted, it’s easy to be overtaken by depression, pessimism, and fear of a “new normal.”

Understanding markets is critical to your happiness and overall success. Most people fail to educate themselves beyond the walls of their cubicle. But recognizing where your profession fits in the current market condition is what separates the run-of-the-mill professional from the entrepreneur and savvy businessperson. It’s the power of getting paid in its purest form.

Just keep that in mind when you visit your favorite restaurant and take advantage of a two-for-one meal special. Or when you go to the department store and shop mostly from the clearance rack. We as individuals feel victimized when we are discounted, but businesses don’t. They use discounts to increase revenue and stay afloat. Employers understand, perhaps more than their employees, the power of getting paid less.

Make no mistake: You, too, are a business and brand, just like the company you work for! A new opportunity, promotion, or demotion requires you to sell yourself. And regardless of your price, employers expect quality, just as we do when we purchase items on discount or otherwise. Should you find yourself in the position of negotiating or accepting lower pay, the following tips can be used to make the most of your situation:

1) Come up with a discount pricing strategy.

This approach is not always possible or even practical—especially when you’re facing demotion. But as a rule of thumb, you should always raise your price a few points and negotiate from there. It’s no different from a retail store raising its prices, then offering what seems to be a “reduced cost.” As you practice and fine-tune this strategy, it will become easier and save you distress in the long run.

2) The power of getting paid is about making the scenario a win-win for all.

Everyone is after the best product at the lowest price possible. Contrary to politicians in Washington who designate the start and end of recessions, it’s ALWAYS an employer’s market and businesses are playing to win! The power of getting paid is about positioning yourself to win also. Never suggest or give the impression that you are desperate. If you decide to take a pay cut in lieu of a job cut, back it up with statements like “The current market is calling for everyone to think and work more competitively. I believe in my work and in this company, and would love the opportunity to continue my career here!”

3) Give your customers nothing less than your absolute best.

There’s rarely an excuse for not giving your best performance. Quality is the single-most way to solidify your worth and remind employers (or customers) of your caliber. It’s like saying “Hey, they don’t make them like me anymore! Time’s running out for you to come to the table, as I’m always looking for the next opportunity.”

4) Always seek ways to boost your value.

Remember that nothing stays the same. Value, for instance, either appreciates or depreciates. To master your profession and the power of getting paid, you have to stay competitive and seek ways to boost your credibility. This can be done through continuing education, or by volunteering, networking, and managing a small proprietorship.

“Seriously, Thomas? The Power of Getting Paid Less? You’ve gotta be kidding me!”

Listen, I’m just trying to give y’all dumb asses some game…much like I do with all my blog posts. The power of getting paid less, if nothing else, means you’re STILL getting paid. Certainly a lot better than what some can do in this sluggish economy! It also teaches business strategy and entrepreneurship. Demotions and price cuts will no longer scare you: You will recognize them as effective ways to keep revenue until market conditions improve.

I don’t expect everyone to agree with this way of thinking, or to recognize the power of getting paid less. It’s far much easier to blame your employer or the current economy, or everyone’s favorite, President Obama. Of course there are exceptions, as described in this earlier controversial post. But this installment of Monday Unleaded is for those with a business mind. Never let a pay cut stop you from pressing forward. Your “normal” is defined by hard work and perseverance.

This is your Monday Unleaded for the week of October 27, 2013. Exercise your power of getting paid and have a productive week!

Song of the Week

Adam F and DJ Craze – Karma (featuring Guru and Carl Thomas)


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