The Lazy Way to Increase Your Income
Previous blog posts have been focused around frugality, whilst this offers a fantastic way to increase your saving rate it has a capped limit.
Yet increasing your income level is totally uncapped, so if you’re able to combine these together you have a very powerful combination.
So how can you increase your income without taking on huge risks? First seek to understand the rule of money:
The rule of money
Best explained by the tale of Jack and Billy…..
You may have seen Billy in the last week or so, you may have also seen Jack but they’re a lot fewer in numbers.
Billy works at your local nationwide grocery store as a checkout service assistant on minimum wage (£16,640).
Billy serves customers in a chilly air-conditioned supermarket balancing himself on a cheap seat.
Yet 30 miles away we find Jack in a warm, plush office. You can find him sinking into his deep executive chair, it’s got a little handle that allows him to lean right back and even has a head rest. Jack’s office is always heated just right, he even has a little plant and his name on the door!
Jack is the procurement manager and earns £60,000. A whopping 3.5 times more than what Billy earns. His boss is more understanding, he gets more holiday and even better benefits.
So why is Billy slaving away, working longer and harder for a mere £16,640 whilst Jack is living it up in the city?
Why do some people work harder but earn less?
The management sees Jack as a value adding asset, whilst Billy is (rightly or wrongly) perceived as an expense.
Since the skill requirements of Billy’s job are so little, a significant part of the population is pre-qualified for his job. ‘There are always more Billys wanting to be employed’ Shouts the line manager! Rude but true, the grocery store never struggles to find additional checkout assistants. There is little incentive for Billy’s employer to pay him well. A similar situation exists with admin assistants, waiters and bar staff.
Now let’s take a look at Jack the procurement manager. Jack leads the team in charge of buying and selling goods for the greatest price. Jacks department can save his employer millions, significantly increasing the company’s share price. And Jack is in charge of the whole department!
So while Billy’s value is considered small and an expense. Jack’s value is considered high, he is seen as an asset.
Furthermore if the management team combine all the checkout service assistant’s salaries together, they get to millions of pounds. Every penny their salaries increase by, the company growth needle slows down.
Jack, is one of three nationwide. His salary has an almost nil effect on the company’s asset value. Combining a low salary impact, with high responsibilities and impact and we can start to see why Jack is rewarded more.
This is like successful investment bankers, salesmen and marketers who are paid well. Decent people in these trades are both in short supply (compared to demand) and add value. The better banker, salesmen or marketer, the better the company does.
The rule of money states: ‘Money flows to those who provide value in a low supply, high demand area’.
If you run the business, rather than working for one, your income potential is vastly enhanced.
The value you provide must make a difference and fulfil a desire or ‘want’. Consider the number of small businesses closing because they’re based on the owner’s desire to ‘be his own boss’, rather than solving a need.
Increasing your value – The greatest ROI you’ll ever find
If you can find a way to increase your value to either your employer (through specialised knowledge) or customers. You can substantially lift your earning potential.
How can you increase your impact and value?
If you’re employed, I’d begin by asking your company, industry or customers what they desperately need.
If you’re not employed what industries are experiencing rapid growth – How can you fulfil their needs? This could be new technologies you could learn or languages you could seek to understand. Small business owners could ask their existing customers what they desperately need and seek to fulfil it.
How can you learn the knowledge, required to increase your value?
Most people learn new skills first, then seek to make money from them, either by selling their time to an employer or by selling a product/service. This always strikes me as backwards. Why not seek to understand what a marketplace wants first.
Take courses, listen to podcasts, read books, undertake apprenticeships or find mentors to fill that knowledge void. You can then be confident what you are learning is of value.
Once your value increases does your income just increase?
If running your own business, you’ll likely see your income increase naturally. If employed you may find your employer limits you in pay-scales, responsibilities and worth. So you hitting a ceiling with your current employer is a possibility.
Assuming your trade is in short supply and high demand. You can either negotiate a pay rise based or look for another employer who is willing to recognise this. Certain opportunities such as the start of an employment and review sessions, open a discussion for salary reviews.
Self-employment offers fewer barriers
As you can see the strategy offers more potential if you’re self-employed. With your new found skills, you may find the opportunity to freelance or start your own business is appealing.
What could you run on the side to generate extra income?
Or could you take your skills to an existing business?
By now you should be bubbling with ideas to increase your income.
Does Billy’s story sounds similar to yours? I’ve also worked in a popular supermarket… as a checkout service assistant!