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The change we yearn for comes by choice and not by chance. The difference is within.

During my interview to join the workforce for one of companies I ever worked for, that's over 10 years ago, I was asked about my expected remuneration. I had thought that people working in the same department, doing more-or-less the same tasks, should be earning something similar. Despite giving a range of figures, it was in my belief that this would not influence much what I finally get paid because the company must be having an established rate. Along the way, I came to realize that I was probably earning something more than a good number of my colleagues. This kept me wondering what causes others to earn more or less. It made me remember that in my previous organization, which was a training institution, some people earned more despite being at the same level. Why? Because they had extra classes allocated to them by the manager. They had more to give to the market-place. They had more value.

Along the way, when I started my first business enterprise, earning money was hard. It later dawned on me that I was not yet adequately equipped. I had not learned much about the industry and was yet to master certain skills that would make things work. I figured out that for my business to grow, I had to grow. It was around the same time when I came across the phrase that, "if it is to be, it is up to me." I dived into study and increased my value. The market responded accordingly.

Every year, as I set goals, a large part of it is hinged on what I am becoming. I know that what I'm becoming is what determines relevance in the market. I must improve in value. It's true for every individual. Nothing is going to get better if you do not get better. If you're a sales person, you must improve in your selling skills, leadership, among others. Any field you are in, the Japanese kaizen philosophy can apply; daily improvement and getting better. If we do not choose to improve in value, then we can be sure that no amount of new year wishes are going to help us get better. The new year will be the same as the years gone by. We get paid according to our value in the market place. Not according to our years of practicing or our certificates. Both experience and papers are good, but they don't guarantee any development. We're in a world of results. Choose to continuously work on yourself harder than you work on your job or on your business. Read books, attend trainings & workshops, hang around with those from whom you can learn, get some mentors,.. Choose to learn deliberately and nothing will stand between you and your dreams of a better tomorrow. It may cost something, but it's worth the investment.

Another area of interest is this; interest. Wherever we are, we rely on other people for our own good. No one is an island. This is irrespective of how much you think you know or how good you may think you are in your own trade. All the value that we acquire is value to others and not to us. If you become a top consultant in your industry or a great pastor, or a businessman, you will need people to serve and others to support your ministry. In trying to achieve all these and to build fruitful relationship with people, which you have to strive to do, one critical factor you have to consider is, INTEREST! What's their interest? What's your interest. This is a leadership issue and if you get it wrong, everything else will most likely go wrong. At least in the long run.

Every person you're going to deal with, whether a customer or a colleague, a junior staff or your boss, your employee or your supplier, a partner or a competitor, just remember that there is an interest which must be gotten right. If you do not take care of their interest, they will not take care of your interest. If you get their interests wrong, the relationship wouldn't  prosper. You have probably heard that your net-worth is determined by your network. If there is one important thing everyone needs to continually do, it is to keep growing their network. This can only work well for us if we get the interest equation right. It takes patience, creativity and integrity among other things. As you work to improve your value, do not forget to learn how to deal with people. Do not forget to learn leadership; which is all about people skills and influence. Otherwise you will still be unable to fully enjoy the fruits of your value in the market-place. John Maxwell got it right when he said "people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care." Care  about what? Their interest!

Zig Ziglar said, "If you help enough other people get what they want, you will get everything you want." That's service! As we keep the kaizen philosophy; continually working on our VALUE in the market-place and also on our leadership; taking keen interest in other people's INTEREST when they deal with us and showing them how they are going to achieve that which they want, we must keep seeking opportunity to demonstrate our value. An opportunity to serve. It is by serving others that our life starts to get better. If we serve less, we shall always get less of what we want. The more we serve, the better our lives become. Service to others leads to greatness. We must therefore be able to identify and take up opportunities as they show up. Most times opportunities don't identify themselves. They camouflage and appear non appetizing. Sometimes clothed like trouble. Keeping an open mind and willingness to positively evaluate the chances we come across, and to get into the game, is very important for our progress. It is said that, according to research, one of the most common regrets at the deathbed is for the opportunities missed and risks not taken.

At times we let an opportunity pass because we feel it doesn't befit our level or that it  wouldn't give us commensurate compensation. Let's know that payment will come. No work goes in vain. The universe owes no one anything. Being in the game in itself is good enough payment if you don't get anything else. That's where good fortune comes in. Someone walking beside the field will identify you and approach you to join his or her team for a better pay just because you were in the game and gave it your all. So let not our evaluation for opportunities be based only on the package. Something is better than nothing by far! Let's be eager to serve and then the rest will take care of themselves. Join some additional church group, club, volunteer organization, whatever! It will expand your life better and make you have a more exciting year. The busier you will be, juggling everything without neglecting your fundamentals; spiritual and family life, the more exciting life is going to become. Live full!

In conclusion, religiously work on the three areas; value, interest and opportunity, and let's compare notes at the end of 12 months. You will be amazed! I now have the audacity to wish you all the best in your endeavors this season because you can and should do better! Live Your Dream!


 Authored by Otieno Paul-Peter, Esq., the founder of Live Your Dream Enterprises Ltd and the author of the lifechanging book, Live Your Dream in 7Ds currently selling on Amazon. Click to Download Free Book Sample. Live Your Dream Enterprises Ltd is currently offering unbeatable promotions on Talks, Corporate Trainings and Team Building services. Get in touch for more.

© 2021 Otieno Paul-Peter, Esq. Communications