The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. (George Bernard Shaw)
I talked in depth with salespeople earning over $200,000 per year. I asked, “How did you get into the position where you won’t even consider taking a base salary under $100,000?”
The answer is very simple he said, “It is all in how you position yourself.”
I talk with accountants, programmers, managers, salespeople, engineers, and others every day who would never take less than $100K. Others doing similar jobs can’t conceive of earning over $40K.
The difference is that the well paid people are always trying to develop the skills and experiences that are rare. One salesman said, “I’m highly paid because of who I can get in to see. I can talk to people in research laboratories and CFO’s of companies all across America. I know how to get their attention and sell to them. In Philadelphia there are thousands of salespeople who sell well in Philadelphia, but can’t or won’t sell in New York or Boston. If you are competing with a thousand salespeople for that Philadelphia only job, guess what? You may think you are worth $200K, but there are at least 500 other people willing to do it for $50K-$80K. You will never get paid $200K because you have positioned yourself wrong. Too many salespeople have positioned themselves to sell in Philadelphia for $50K.”
The same applies to computer programmers, managers, accountants, and even call center technicians. I know a lot of people earning over $100K because they have looked at their business carefully for years. They constantly ask, “Why is Joe earning more than me? What jobs are paying big bucks? What do I have to do to get there?”
First you need to position yourself at entry level so you can get experience. Then you have to see where the rare talent is. What are people doing that earns them the money you want to earn. Then you need to educate yourself, volunteer to help on projects, and get involved in decision making. Eventually you will work up to the rarefied air of the best paid people in your field.
So how are you positioning yourself? How will you be positioned next year?
Something To Do Today
Make a list of 5 people who are doing what you want to do and earning what you want to earn.
Now go invite each one to lunch. Whether they accept your invitation or not, ask them for help. Ask them how you can join the rarefied company at their level.