Last week, I met Harry (name changed), a business prospect working in a reputed IT MNC and he asked me what, “What product do you sell?” He seemed very passionate about the product and we both agreed that the product is the center of any business. Eventually, the customer pays the price for the value delivered by the product.
One thing led to another and harry shared with me that he was very frustrated with his job, though it’s a high paying job but he did not feel motivated at all, he was not getting his due recognition also at office. Part of the conversation went like this:
Me: “What Product do you sell?”
Harry: (almost laughing at my ignorance) “As I told you, my company sells the product, I’m just a software professional”
Me: “Why does the company pay you salary?”
Harry: (after some thought) “Because I deliver Value to them”
Me: “That means you are the product, isn’t it?”
Harry: (now irritated) “You can say that I guess”
Me: “That means you sell your value and your customer; I mean your employer pays for it and if you are frustrated at work, you are not able to deliver the expected value”
Harry felt offended though he did not express it to me but the meeting got over without much further discussion. However, a new theory was taking shape in my mind. I did some research (means Google) and here I am, connecting the dots.
Price is what you pay and value is what you get. Gone are the days when getting a job meant you are settled in life for good. Now-a-days, every employee is a product that is meant to deliver appropriate value to his employer. If you deliver more than expected value and you are a good salesman of your own product (yourself), you may keep raising the price. On the other hand, if you are not delivering appropriate value, your employer may stop using you and if the same attitude continues, you will soon be jobless. Also, your product (skill) needs to stay relevant to the current needs of the employers. Sometimes, people become outdated because they are not upgrading themselves and they wonder why they are not selling (read jobless) anymore.
However, being a good product alone is not good enough. You also need to sell yourself well. Sometimes, the employers fail to recognize your value due to policies, volumes or office politics. In such case, you must be able to showcase your work and your worth. If you are not good at it, don’t blame the eco-system, it’s unfortunate but it’s true these days. There is no need to undersell but if you are doing so, it’s almost your own fault.
Joey Gerard, a Chevrolet car salesman sold 13001 cars in 15 years. How did he do it? He believed that he sold himself before selling the car. According to him, he was the first product and then the car came. All car salesmen had the same physical product but if one is selling more cars than 100 others put together, it happened because he understood that he has to sell himself first, for that, he has to be good and also believe in self. That’s the same way how Sundar Pichai or Satya Nadella reached top positions in Google and Microsoft.
Have you always wondered why some people are getting paid a lot more than what you think is their value? You may keep thinking that they are lucky or playing politics but the fact is that they are delivering a great value and they know how to sell the best product in the world – “themselves”. Product Performance is always recognized but if it is combined with a good sales and negotiation pitch, it can derive much more value.
Carrying a product mindset for self is the secret of personal success in corporate life. When you deliver great value as a product, your employer gets much higher value and willing to pay any price for you. Remember, employment is temporary but if you carry good value, you have no dearth of opportunities. You will be indispensable and also in demand.
You will do great if you are conscious about delivering great value considering yourself a product. At the end of each month, think, what value did I deliver? Am I getting paid more or less for the value I am delivering? Whether you are a software professional, a businessman, a doctor, a policeman, a teacher, politician, a parent or a home maker; you must deliver the value considering yourself a product. You are the primary product before the physical product (car, school, electronics etc.) comes.
You are the best product ever created. Do you believe in it and are you ready to sell it? Do it and you will be on your way to your best version. #WelcomeToYou20