Don’t Prorate Your Employer

Just thinking about some experiences and attitudes I’ve witnessed in the past (not necessarily just as a boss), I starting thinking about what my dad taught me about work ethic.

He said, “If you agree to a job, give your best. Don’t shortchange your employer.”

What that means is … if you agree to a job, with a set salary or pay, then that employer has hired you and your best — not your second best, or mediocre effort.

Anything less is laziness and cheating. Some might call it fraud.

Maybe I’m being harsh because I’m a boss in a small business with a small team now and I take this personally … but I also think those who agree to terms, then decide they are really worth 25% more, let’s say, and consequently prorate their commitment, time, and skill based on their internal inventory of self-worth, are cheating everybody, including themselves.

Here’s what this type of work ethic results in …

  1. People notice laziness – they remember it too. No one wants a teammate that they’ll have to overcompensate for to carry their weight.
  2. No one wants to hire lazy, half-hearted people – that’s the easiest way to sink a business and morale on a team. You’ll get a terrible reputation and that cloud will follow you.
  3. No one wants to be around lazy people – if you’re always thinking you got shortchanged for something, you’ll attract other lazy people in your life … and the hard working others will have left though.
  4. It’s ego driven instead of value driven – it’s about your inflated ego and misguided expectations, and not the value that you’re providing for your team and employer.

Listen … I’ve seen a lot of people think they were worth more and decide to give less.

If you do that … trust me, you’ll never get anywhere in the world. The last time I checked, people just don’t come up and hand you money.

Well, wait, yeah, they do … it’s called charity.

The best way to get what you think you deserve is to PROVE IT BY EARNING IT … through hard work, commitment and personal growth that benefits your team and business … and ultimately, it’ll benefit yourself.

I’m extremely thankful my dad hammered that into me … because my family, those I work with and for, hopefully, have gotten more than they bargained for.

It was great career advice for me.

So morale of the story … if you agree to a job, be a person of your word … and fulfill your obligation, or move on. You aren’t doing anyone any favors by cheating.


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2 thoughts on “Don’t Prorate Your Employer”

  1. Ooh rah! I’m with you Cory. I got sucked into the bad attitude at a previous job and realized that as long as I wasn’t giving 100% at what I was doing *I* wasn’t happy. Once I went back to always doing my best, and then some, I looked forward to getting up and going to work.

    Now as a small business owner, I give that same 100% to my clients. That means I don’t give low-ball quotes to get new customer or project. It works both ways: I know what I’m working on is worth money for the time, and my clients know that they are paying for a premium service and those high expectations raise the standard of the content, our communications, and everything about the project.

  2. Cory, I had this nugget hidden in my feed reader and can’t believe I missed it.

    I couldn’t agree more with what you said and the sentiment behind your dads words. I gave serious consideration to printing this post out and having my staff read it. I am going to er on the side of caution and not be “in their face” with it, but I am constantly trying to instill this type of true work ethic in them. My desire is to help those with ethic issues grow into a hard worker. Not giving the 100% that one is capable of is a business killer for sure.

    Thanks again!

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