Do you believe that people pay you based on value (the benefit you give them)? Do you believe that the more value you have the more money you make?
You know how amateur soccer players get paid nothing and professional players get paid a fortune? it's because professional soccer players have more value, they’ve worked on their skill and perfected it. Why do H&M shoes cost $50 and Louis Vuitton shoes cost $500? The LV’s are perceived to have more value because more time was spent working on the LV’s, more money was spent on the material used to make the LV’s and they have better quality.
To get more clients or to get paid more, you’ll need to increase your value.
How then do you increase your value as an entrepreneur?
To increase your value you’ll need to work on 3 major things; your professional skills, your people skills and yourself. The good news is…ANYONE CAN LEARN THESE SKILLS.
1. Your Professional Skill
Know your shit!
You cannot give what you do not have, so invest in learning your craft. I’ve learnt that as an entrepreneur, you either treat your business like a business or you end up having an expensive hobby.
To treat your business like a business, you need to be willing to put focused time, energy and money into your business. You need to be willing to take risks, to be inconvenienced, to be consistent. You need to be willing to stretch yourself and learn from someone who has what you want. If you are not ready to do all of the above, get ready to keep competing with everyone else that has the same thing to offer.
What’s the point of getting customers/clients if you can’t deliver? And if you can deliver, keep learning and improving unless you want to compete on price till you die.
Remember the story of the talents I shared in my last post? What you nurture and pay attention to will grow and what you neglect or forget about will die. No matter how great you think you are at what you do, keep yourself sharp, keep learning. Make sure you are spending time on the things that bring clients and money. If you spend your time and money on watching TV and buying the best TV related stuff, you’ll get really good at the TV stuff and your business will suffer.
2. Your Interpersonal/people skills
People are everywhere. You live with them, or around them. You do business with them, you buy from them, they buy from you, you eat with people, you drink with people, you work with people and the list goes on. The power is in the hands of those that have great interpersonal/people skills.
I believe that if you master the art of building mutually beneficial relationships, the world will be your oyster. If you sharpen your interpersonal skills and get people to fall in love with you, you will have no headache getting a continuous stream of clients and referrals.
I want you to pause for a moment and think about this: who pays for that product or service you have? The people of course! At the end of the day, it’s the people that have the money. So, if you are able to connect with the people in a way that leaves you and them with a win, you get the money.
Perfection happens when you know your stuff (professional skill) and know how to connect with people (interpersonal skills).
If you’re really good at what you do but are terrible at connecting with people or you give clients attitude (consciously or unconsciously), you my friend will have a problem in the long run, because the moment someone else gets great at connecting with your clients and masters your skill (which will happen as there’s nothing new under the sun) your customers will disappear.
If you're great at connecting with people but have product and services that suck, the moment that someone else shows up and connects with your 'people' and has products that don't suck...some of your customers will leave (I don port oh!), some will stay because people are loyal but ask yourself why you are offering shitty products and services to people you care about.
When you have the habit of being short sited and don't focus on building relationships with your clients/customers, the moment they meet someone that cares about them enough to build relationships with them, you'll be history and they'll remain loyal to the person that cares about them.
People buy from and do business with people they like and avoid those they don’t like. People are also loyal to people and not brands…what I mean by this is, if you can get a similar product (supplement) for a cheaper price you will switch. If brand A’s freshly squeezed orange juice is cheaper than Brand B’s freshly squeezed orange juice, you’ll get the cheaper one because you don’t know the people that own Brand A and Brand B juice.
However, if you know two designers and one makes you feel really good about yourself and the other one is indifferent about you, you will go with the designer that makes you feel really good about yourself.
The Good and Bad News
The bad news is you may care about people and not know how to show it. It is still going to come across as you not caring…Past romantic relationship problem, anyone?
But the good news is, you can learn to sharpen your interpersonal/people skills no matter what your personality is. It doesn’t matter if you are shy or introverted.
We live in a world that now promotes giving people attitude but the truth is if you treat people badly they will not want to buy from you, work with you or be near you but if you treat people right they will want to be around you, work with you and do business with you. When they work with you and do business with you, they will refer other people to you because you know your stuff and you’re great to work with.
The more you invest in people the more they will invest in you. If you want people to get interested in you and what you do (your business) get interested in them and what they do (their job/work/business). The more you encourage people, the more you will be encouraged. It’s the law of reciprocity.
If you want to get serious about improving your people skills in easy-to-follow steps, apply to work with me. Here’s what one of my clients had to say:
Invest in yourself!
Do you know that you can design your life? As human beings we have the power to be proactive (control our reactions) rather than reactive (live by reflex), we have the power to live our life by design and not by default.
Remember what I said earlier …what you nurture will grow and what you ignore will die, that applies to you as a person. If you invest in developing yourself you will grow as a person.
I’ll give you a personal example. In the past, I'd read a couple of personal development books and worked on myself but in December 2014, I decide I was going to take personal development seriously. I grew my mind every morning by reading ‘good’ books or listening to audio that made me grow throughout 2015. When I was cooking I listened to audio, when I was washing dishes or doing laundry I listened to audio. At the end of 2015, when I did a review of the year and was shocked at how far I'd come, I was amazed at how much I'd grown and how far I'd come in just one year.
Stop focusing so much on fixing everyone around you and work more on yourself. You need to put time and money into you.
During a recent interview, Tony Robbins was talking about how hard he works on himself, his continuous personal development and training, about how he’s not ‘special’ he’s just worked really hard on himself and put money into himself and it hit me...
the proof is in the pudding which is why he charges between $3995-$7995 dollars for a 3-day program and it gets SOLD OUT...that’s over $1300 for a day. I just checked his website today; the next one is in December and the higher packages ($5995 and $7995) are sold out.
Truly, no matter your personality type, working harder on yourself to become more skilled will make you more valuable than others.
Check yourself when you start to feel like you know everything about a particular topic. Never stop learning, if you do you stop growing and then you die.
Come up with a way to develop yourself/mind daily. I recommend working on your personal development first thing in the morning. Invest time and money into your development, just like you would invest money into a business and see how different you'll be a year from now.
In summary, having great people skills will transform every area of your life. Having great people skills will get you through the door but great personal and professional skills will keep you there. You get back whatever investment you make in your business, yourself or others; If you invest generously in your business, others and yourself you will get generous results. If you invest little in your business, others and yourself, you will get little back too.
I will be doing a series soon to further emphasize the importance of sharpening your people skills and leveraging your network.
If you’d like to sharpen your interpersonal/people skills, click here to apply for a free assessment session right now. I can help you just as I have helped many others.