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The Law of Compensation

Updated on July 24, 2020
Akin Akinbodunse profile image

Akin is a High Productivity, Life, and Relationship Coach. Presently moderate a growing Social Media audience of more than 100,000 followers

Reward
Reward

“The whole of what we know is a system of compensations. Every defect in one manner is made up in another. Every suffering is rewarded; every sacrifice is made up; every debt is paid.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Earl Nightingale's Corollary

The above quote is an extract from Emerson's Essay on Compensation. It is known as the "Law of Compensation." Its purest form states, "everyone will be duly rewarded for their work (contribution)." Note, this is a law, not a theory, nor a rule. It is tried, tested, and happens at all times, under all circumstances of life.

It parallels the "Law of Sowing and Reaping," and "The Law of Cause and Effect." There are several analogies to this law to bring it closer to the specific issue discussed per time. Earl Nightingale's corollary relates directly to the workforce. He states, "The amount of money you receive is going to be in direct ratio to 'the need for what you do;' 'your ability to do it' and, 'the difficulty there will be in replacing you.'"

“You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.” — Steve Jobs

Creating Value

In essence, the meaning you create depends first on the need for the supposed value you are creating. It sure might be valuable in your own eyes, no doubt. To be rewarded, it has to be relevant in your customers' eyes. So, either you are focused on something they have already expressed interest or are helping them discover a value they overlook.

Next is your ability to deliver on the value in question. The talk is cheap. You have to walk the conversation if you are to receive the reward due. Diligence is of the essence in the know of the rudiments involved in creating the desired value. The creation of value is not a one-time thing, as technology and customer needs are continuously changing. There is a need to get feedback from the customers and feeding the same back into the production process.

“When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.” — Steve Jobs

Amazing Your Customers

The aim ought not to merely please the customers but to amaze them. You want them to be ambassadors for the service and product you provide, thereby guaranteeing brand loyalty. You want to create a special feeling in and with them with every interaction. Remember what Maya Angelou thought us. It is applicable here just as well. Maya taught us,

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."

You want your customers to have a feeling of delight from doing business with you. You want them to feel they gained value, a value much more than the price they paid. That is the secret to a cult following, and that is where the money is.

Build on Your Strong Points

Bringing this down to our every work interaction, this involves continuously updating yourself globally. Areas for upgrade include specific skills required for your job, personal management skills, own development skills, interpersonal skills, amongst others. If you have a good mentor, he or she will lead you along this path. If you don't, there is a wealth of material available online to get you started. One excuse this general with not be able to count on is the availability of development materials.

It would help if you did a SWOT analysis and know where your strengths and opportunities are. That way, you don't waste your time chasing after shadows. As Peter Ferdinand Drucker, the famed Austrian-born American management consultant, educator, and author, taught, "A person can perform only from strength. One cannot build performance on weakness, let alone on something one cannot do at all."

Your winning streak is not in the crowd. It is in differentiating yourself by use of your leverage. Your strengths and your ability to think, create, and imagine are what will give you differentiation in the market, your career, your business, or wherever else you might need it. To quote Russell Conwell, "People with leverage have dominance over people with less leverage...humans who use these tools of leverage have more power over humans that do not. Saying it more simply, 'leverage is power.'"

Approachable
Approachable

Differentiation = Winning Formula

Lastly, your compensation is a function of your replaceability. Your replaceability pretty much flows from above. It is dependent on the amount of differentiation you have either created or not created. Why should someone buy your product if there is another available with the same or lower price tag? Why should I use your services when I can get the same service at the same or a lower price elsewhere?

Why do people spend up to $3,000 on an Apple MacPro when they can get a PC Laptop that will probably service their need at about $500? Why will someone spend the extra money to buy an Infiniti series against a Nissan, even though both are, for all intent and purpose, made on the same assembly line? The same questions go for an Audi compared to a Honda and Lexus compared to a Toyota. What do you suppose is the answer?

Cult Followership = Brand Loyalty

I am an Apple fan, note I did not say customer. So, I can give you the easy answer to the first one. It is known and called "cult followership." It gives us a unique feeling of belonging to a peculiar sect, with the idea that we are, at the same time, getting values others are not privileged. Now for the answer to the Infiniti vs. Nissan question let us take a quick trip to T3 Atlanta. They have the following for an answer,

"Perhaps the most significant difference between the two brands is the creature comforts included in the various models. Infiniti is indeed a luxury brand, so you'll get more perks by going with it over a Nissan. If you want a vehicle that will thrill you each time you climb behind the wheel or feel more connected to the road, Infiniti is a much safer bet."

Anyone who's a fan of cutting-edge technology should go with Infiniti over Nissan. It's not that Nissans are bad vehicles; they're quite lovely and high values. The thing is that Infinitis as luxury models offer unrivaled quality, no matter if they're sedans, sports cars, or SUVs. Simply put, you can't go wrong with Infiniti, even if you love Nissan."

Well Compensated
Well Compensated

“Let’s go invent tomorrow rather than worrying about what happened yesterday.” — Steve Jobs

End of Discussion

Well, as it is said, that is the end of the discussion. Your irreplaceability is in your differentiation. Your impetus for differentiation is in your will to win. Your will to win will keep you in the extra mile. The extra mile is where your life beckons on the Law of Compensation to go to work on its behalf.

© 2020 Akin Akinbodunse

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