I was sitting down today at my computer with my three year old daughter, Ellie on my left leg and my five month old daughter, Sienna, on my right leg. They were watching music videos with me. There we were, all three of us, just having a good time. As I sat down, I thought of a question…
Am I Qualified?
Right now, the World Basketball Championships are being held in Turkey. The United States is playing to qualify for the Olympics which will be held in 2012, in London, England. If they lose, they have to try again in another tournament, the 2011 FIBA Americas Championship. If they lose that, they don’t get to go to the Olympics in 2012.
I’m going to focus on being qualified in regards to economics for the purpose of this article. There’s many things to be qualified for. Being qualified to play basketball in the Olympics. Or to to be a father, husband, friend, minister, etc… But I want to talk economics because I like numbers and can use what I earn now as a measuring stick.
I look at my qualifications right now and how it relates to me earning the kind of income I believe I can. Jim Rohn really hit it home for me. He said we get paid for bringing value to the marketplace. Some people make $40 an hour (that’s in the BALL PARK of what I make – I’m not revealing my salary, I signed an agreement not too). Some make $400 an hour. And some make many tens of millions of dollars a year. Economics is important to me. It is a real measuring stick of how I am doing. The big question is, “How can you earn more?”
Good question. Am I qualified right now to earn $400 an hour? That’s an important number to me. It represents the peak of what I might accomplish with my current set of economic standards. I could ask my boss for a raise. Let’s see what $400 an hour comes out to. One moment while I get my calculator out. That’s $832,000 a year.
So one way to see if I am qualified for that kind of income is to go ask my boss and his boss for a raise equal to ten times what I’m making right now. I’m not delusional mind you. Not usually anyway. I realize that it would be absurd to just waltz in and ask for that. But if I can’t envision myself earning the income and having the courage to demand it, then I might be in for a slow ride to the top.
So what do I do? Spend the next 10 years going to business school and then the next 20 trying to be a CEO? If I go by salaries, that’s the only way I am going to get to ten times my salary. By being a CEO that gets paid well and has many incentives (bonuses and stock options) to further supplement my income.
Am I Qualified To Be A CEO?
All right, let’s use a CEO as an example. By educational standards, I am NOT qualified to be a CEO. Right now I’m a web developer who is on a mission to get the most out of myself that I can. I recently got promoted (by title and work) to “Scrum Master”. This is a leadership position to help our team more quickly (and with higher quality) develop better software. I don’t know if it will translate into more pay. But I do know it will translate into more experience.
But I digress. I’m talking about being qualified to earn ten times what I do right now. And my first idea is to be a CEO because they earn ten times what I do. And that is the current highest peak I can see for myself right now. I have the ability to walk up to our CEO at work and say, “I can do what you do. Let me show you.” I might get laughed at. But let’s examine this for a moment.
Our CEO excels at getting the right people around him. He’s got the education and experience to back up his title. But he plays more the role of the Wizard of Oz in his job than an expert in any particular discipline. That is, he’s not going to be an accountant or a web developer or in sales. But he does excel in bringing smart people into the right roles. Hmmmm.
A Recurring Theme
The harder I work at my job, the more I see the limit of what I can earn. This seems counter-intuitive to me. If you work hard, shouldn’t you get paid more for that? I’m realizing that the answer is a resounding NO! Sure, you can get paid for having a valuable skill, but you become a puzzle piece by doing that. Just one of many pieces that make up an entire whole (a company).
Most of the people I see earning a high level of income are those whose influence is extending to many people. They are the people who take the puzzle pieces and make something out of it. Somehow the high income earners are able to affect large numbers of people. How do they do this? Honestly, I don’t know. I’m not qualified to answer it based on my experience. But I am qualified to share my insights and experiences. Qualified because I have a desire to teach through them.
Choosing is more than thinking. It is actually moving and doing. Right now my fingers are typing fast on the keyboard. This is more than me just sitting in front of the TV with a bowl of popcorn. I’m choosing to do something. I believe high income earners CHOOSE to make the income they do. The ability to choose this is such an important distinction. So I am going to make a choice about my income right now.
I Will Make…
$832,000 a year. Hmm, something isn’t right. I feel as if a giant fog is covering my mind when I say that statement. It’s as if I’m uttering gibberish that nobody can understand. There is an emptiness. A void. To put it bluntly I think, “How in the hell am I going to do that?” I don’t know. I’m earning 1/10 of that right now and I feel like I’m hitting a wall…
I could give up and just say, “Well, whatever I get I’ll just have to live with.” I could change my state right now and play The Chosen Ones by Dream Evil. I could listen to The Eye of The Tiger. I could yell to myself, “Step up! Step up! Earn your place. Let’s go do it!” But like rubbing an antique lamp hoping for a Geni, this by itself will not yield the wish I desire.
This blog is about getting the most out of yourself that you possibly can. Can I possibly make $832,000 a year? I believe it’s possible. I believe I’m an intelligent being capable of making good things happen. I’m reminded of the movie, “The Count of Monte Cristo.” In it, Edmond Dantes and his bodyguard are in the midst of a horde of of treasure. Boxes and boxes are piled in their skiff so much that it is nearly tipping over. His bodyguard is ecstatic while he stares with a blank face.
He’s more concerned with getting revenge against those who have wronged him. He’s too angry to see the fortune in front of him. Thankfully the Count turns himself around and ends up using his money for good. I know there is a danger in focusing too much on the money side of things. But I also know the good that can be done for others and my family with an economic fortune. Therefore…
I Demand It Of Myself
I demand it of myself. Not for glory. Not for fame. For my family. For extending my reach as far as I possibly can. The question, “Am I Qualified?” is certainly the tough one to face right now. But this dollar amount is so clearly etched in my mind right now that I can’t shake it. $832,000 in a year. Jim Rohn said that America is a ladder to climb to economic fortune. I most certainly am not going to make $832,000 this year. But I can start going up the ladder…
The rungs of the ladder that must be faced for me are the following:
Quite frankly, I’m a really nice guy. I think I will always be so. But to make $832,000 in a year, you have to have a pretty high standard. You have to create expectations and results that far exceed average. You have to get more out of people than they could get out of themselves. I’m not assertive enough right now. The reality is that I must be willing to be aggressive, persuasive, and charismatic to lead people. I’m not going to get $832,000 without help…
My planning really suffers. I couldn’t sleep at night were I to say that I’m a master planner. I know a number now, $832,000. Now I can make a plan to get there. A series of steps to build up to the climax. Baby steps one at a time to the end goal.
I need to ramp this up big time. A book a week to start. Tapes, videos, and seminars as often as I can. Finding time in the morning, day, and evening will be crucial for this.
To create the value of $832,000 a year, I must be more focused than the majority of people. I must be so focused that I am able to create ideas and inspiration that is far beyond what is being offered right now.
I’m not sure why I’m thinking of spirituality here. I tend to rely on my own skills more than anything. But for what I am trying to accomplish, I am going to have to get help from a higher power. I believe there is a higher power available to guide us. I will be asking for guidance and strength from that source.
Am I Qualified Or Delusional?
I think this is an important question. I see delusional as someone who thinks they can do something but in reality has no chance of accomplishing it due to factors the person is not able to see – factors outside of their scope of understanding. There might be some of those factors right now for me that I don’t see. But I’m still willing to try. And I understand I don’t know everything. Who knows, I might learn that when you reach a certain economic point, that a number isn’t nearly as important…
My poor wife might think I’m crazy. But I’ve never set a number like this before. I’ve thought about earning $250,000 before. I even wrote it down. But it was a random number. I didn’t put events in motion to get there. I believe I’m more prepared to do so now. I’m not afraid of trying. I’m more afraid of one day facing my life and being asked why I didn’t utilize my talents to their full potential. That frightens me more than the scariest monster…