Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 13 seconds
When You give more than you take, you’ve got leverage forever. Think about it. (sic)
- Gary Vaynerchuck
No, I do not mean letting people walk all over you, quite the opposite actually. Give people something to lose. If they do not have anything to lose, they WILL take advantage and exploit your business or even you. Always give more than you take and put the ball in your court.
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Empathy is not only being a good human, it’s #good business. As an entrepreneur, you are in a constant state of building. I believe in building for sustainability and nurturing relationships by doing what is fair and just. What you are building could very well outlive your life in this physical realm. Respectfully, people with jobs typically don’t have to worry about such things. When they’re gone, their job is given to someone else. Simple enough. But you have something else to worry about, your business after you're are gone. Also, you'll have to live with your business decisions while you continue to be here.
Overcharging just because you can, exploiting employees by not paying them a living wage, treating them like unimportant work horses, ripping off partners or investors and other general nonsense will ultimately destroy your business AND your reputation. Are the short term gains really worth the price you pay? Money is typically short for startups and entrepreneurs, but there are an unlimited number of creative ways to compensate your employees while encouraging them to stay with your company long term. I think you will find these people to be the most valuable.
Taking proper care of those who help you build your enterprise; whether they be partners, investors, employees or customers IS good business.
Helping those who help you (specifically employees) sometimes means you put your own non-necessities on the back burner until their cup is full enough to carry on and focus. Think Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. If you’re employees can’t even afford to eat or provide healthcare for their children, does that help you or your business any? Does that help society? In the end we all suffer or benefit from our collective decisions, whether we realize it or not. But that's me looking at the bigger picture. I believe that business is service to society and it's very important to me to run my business in a socially responsible manner.
Below is an interesting video from Gary Vaynerchuk discussing his thoughts on the topic. If you get a chance, I urge you to visit his website and YouTube channel. He's a very interesting guy.