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Saturday, 1 June 2013

HOW DO I ASK FOR MONEY? or VALUING MY SELF, Part 4


In my last blog I broached the subject of assessing your value in the market.  We will carry on exploring that today.

If you are Julia Roberts the money you can request for your acting services would be in the same sort of ballpark as say Meryl Streep's average movie fee.   That does not necessarily mean however that you can also ask for as much money as Michael Buble, or that he can ask for as much as Tiger Woods or that Tiger's payday will be the same as Roger Federer's.  Like must be compared with like, services with services, widgets with widgets.  Which is why Stephen Hawking probably can't be paid as much as Julia Roberts.  With no disrespect intended for Julia, although Prof H is not as pretty as Ms R, he is almost certainly a whole lot smarter than her, but my guess is he doesn't get paid the way she does.  On the other hand, I am not as pretty as her nor as smart as him (quite a long way off the pace on both counts), and so need to benchmark myself against lawyers and coaches who have similar qualifications, skills and experience.  Tragically (and I shall never understand this), society values in monetary terms singers, actors and sportsmen far more highly than it does teachers, doctors, lawyers, policemen, coaches, writers, healers and even genii, despite the fact that people in those professions (excluding the genii) are generally delivering a more valuable and enduring (in my humble opinion) service to mankind than the entertainers.  That's just the way that it is.  It doesn't mean that any one of them is less worthy as a human being: they just get paid less than the entertainers.  Thankfully, not everyone wants to be an entertainer.

What are you worth in the market?  I don't know (unless you happen to be a lawyer or a coach, in which case I could hazard a reasonable guess), but you can easily find out with a little effort and research in your area of expertise.  The really important thing to remember when you make that assessment is that the number is unrelated to who you are as a human being - it only relates to what you can objectively deliver to the world.

And be very careful if you determine your number to be lower than the market rate.  It might be your strategy to undercut your opposition, but it can also backfire if your customers have a mindset that if they aren't paying enough they aren't getting the quality service or product for which they are looking.

NEXT TIME: PLACING VALUE ON YOUR SELF

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