Why Should I Work for Alternative Compensation?

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You may be wondering why you should work for alternative compensation when good old fashioned CASH would serve you so much better right now. It is a good question, and the answer may be that alternative compensation is not right for you…but consider these reasons before you reject it. Here are 30 reasons why YOU should SEEK OUT and WANT alternative compensation.

1. Because Entrepreneurship is the fastest path to real wealth. Tom Corley, author of Rich Habits proved in his study that of the 4 most common ways to become a multi-millionaire, that starting your own company was the fastest, most rewarding path, and that it guaranteed the most money. 28% of the multi-millionaires in his study had accumulated at average of $7.4 million in 12 years. Partnering with someone to start a business or taking equity (shares of stock) instead of cash puts you in an ownership position rather than keeping you in an employee position. Ownership is where the true wealth gets created. So, even though you might think you really need the cash right now, consider what you really need to have vs. what the true wealth creating potential of ownership can mean to you in the long run.

2. Because You don’t need cash right now, but you want to create real wealth for the future. You may be a recent college graduate living at home, maybe you are still in school, you may be retired, maybe your spouse works or maybe you have a full-time job and this will be a side hustle. By foregoing cash now, you may get MORE CASH later. For example, by earning shares of stock or getting a partnership position, you will earn much more as an owner of the business than you would as an employee. In fact, it’s been proven that the fastest path to wealth is OWNERSHIP of a business. So why work for wages when you can be an owner and get wealthy over time?

3. Because equity goes to work so you don’t have to. As an owner, there will come a point in the business’s growth where you no longer have to go to work every day because you will have employees who are doing the work of keeping the company growing and profitable. Your wealth will keep growing and generating income for you even though you are no longer working. That’s a pretty nice place to be…but you can only get there by taking the risk of ownership.

4. Because You can earn more by getting paid later…in essence becoming a lender to the business. For example, let’s say you are a web designer and you normally get $1000 to build a website. If the owner of the business doesn’t have cash but needs a website now, you contract with them to build the website now and get paid later at a higher rate, say $1500 or even $2000. They get up and running and you get paid as they earn cash. You can even charge interest on your fee if they pay you out over time. The deal you put together is up to you and the business owner so you can get whatever you can negotiate. Imaging this scenario. You build 20 sites with PartnerHere startups who need to pay you later. You get $2000 per site x 20 sites = $40,000. Let’s say that 3 of the businesses never pay you because they never make any money. You’ve still make $34,000 for 17 sites instead of your normal $20,000 that you would have made. That’s an extra $14,000 for taking some compensation risk. That’s what real entrepreneurs do. They take a bit more risk and they get paid for their risk. You should only do this for businesses that you believe in and that you believe will be successful, and you should only do business with people you trust. Don’t be afraid to ask for business and personal references to check somebody out before you make a deal.

5. Because You can earn more. Period. Let’s discuss a commission scenario. If you are a really good salesperson, you will make MUCH more by taking a straight commission opportunity. Think about this from the employers position. If I have to pay you a salary or hourly rate, I have to take the risk that you might not sell much or might not sell it soon, meaning that I have to lower your commission rate to compensate for the salary I’m paying you. If I don’t have that risk then I can pay you much more commission since I only have to pay it when you are successful. The typical commission rate is about 10% depending on the product and margin. But if I don’t have to pay you a salary, that rate might be 15% or 20% or even higher. I pay a 25% commission on my speaking fees currently. That’s HUGE if you are good at what you do!

6. Because You can get something you want or need in exchange. Barter is an awesome tool for boosting the economy and getting deals moving. Often, you need or want something they have. Why not trade? You could exchange cash but sometimes cash is scarce. Let’s say you need marketing and they need accounting. Why not trade? Let’s say they have excess inventory of something you would be buying anyway. Why not trade? What if they have space they are not using and you have skills to offer in exchange? The possibilities are endless.

7. Because You can’t get paid right now. There could be any number of reasons why you aren’t able to get paid in cash right now. As I write this, the unemployment rate is 24% in the U.S. with 38 million Americans out of work. Finding a job isn’t impossible but maybe you haven’t found one yet. Why not “put some points on the board” by becoming a partner in a business or taking equity? You’ll be building wealth slowly while you are looking for your dream job. As the business grows, you can decide to stay or sell out to your partners if you choose to go elsewhere.

8. Because You need work experience or experience in your chosen field. One of the great success stories of my career is around a friend who told me that he wanted to make music videos. Now, I’m never one to rain on someone’s parade, but statistically speaking, that is a longshot career goal…especially for someone with no experience. Now, I’m a connector and an eternal optimist so I suggested that he work for FREE to get some experience. He readily agreed. I called one of my clients who was in the business of making corporate videos. I asked if they would let him work for free. They were very reluctant because they would have to train him and they weren’t sure he would work out, etc. I convinced them to take a chance. Two weeks later, the owner called me to say that he couldn’t get my friend to go home. “He is here waiting for me in the morning and he is the last one out of the building at night! He works his butt off!” I asked if this was a problem. He said “No, but I have to start paying him. I can’t stand the guilt.” My friend was soon promoted to Key Grip and then to cameraman and then head cameraman. Any guesses what he is doing right now? Yes. He is making music videos and he can’t stop smiling. He loves his career. He needed a break and he got one by working for it…for free.

9. Because You want to expand your network or client base. The biggest problem for most freelancers is marketing. They get a few clients and they get busy and they don’t have time to market their services or they don’t know how. Why not consider some side hustle jobs that get you greater exposure to your target market by being flexible about your compensation? Once they have a chance to experience how extraordinary you are, they will be willing to pay cash or pay more and they will introduce you to others who can pay cash. I’ve been referred many times in my career by people or companies that I helped for free.

10. Because you want to get started RIGHT NOW! Sitting around waiting for everything to be perfect is a recipe for disaster. Great entrepreneurs have a sense of urgency! They are impatient! They get deals done NOW! Perfect is the enemy of good enough. Get a deal done and get moving. Once you are in motion, you will meet more people and have more opportunities. There is no substitute for taking ACTION!

11. Because you are wasting your time. Yes, it would be nice to get paid in cash, but if you are sitting around watching TV, playing video games, cooking, surfing the web or talking to friends for hours at a time, wouldn’t it make sense to turn that time in wealth over time rather than just wasting it? Yes, your knitting skills or golf swing may be getting awesome, but are you turning those skills in cash? If not, consider refocusing all that time and energy into a business that you can grow into something that creates real wealth over time. I’m not judging you. You know whether your time is being wasted or not. If it is…maybe it’s time for a change.

12. Because you can get incremental sales. Let’s say you already own a business or have a side hustle. Why not take some jobs or sell some products on PartnerHere for alternative compensation to supplement your current income? You’ve already got X level of revenue for your business. If you barter, you can get other things that you need or want for your business with extra sales you would not likely have gotten elsewhere. Incremental sales are the gravy, and you can use them to enhance your current lifestyle.

13. Because you can trade what you have too much of for something you have too little of. Everyone has too much of something…free time, a skill that is not being utilized to the maximum, clothes, furniture, airtime minutes, extra rooms, office space, cars not being used 24 hours a day, printers not being used, Wi-Fi bandwidth, or even money. Why not barter it or find some other alternative compensation for the stuff you want or need to grow your business or make your life better. If you are not using it anyway, why not hit the Let’s get Creative button and start getting what you want right now!

14. Because you can learn, upgrade your skills and get access to people and projects you couldn’t otherwise access. There are some very cool and wickedly smart people on PartnerHere. They are doing some very cool projects and building companies that you probably couldn’t access elsewhere. So, wouldn’t it make sense to get engaged in a project with them full or part-time, that would expand your horizons. Consider it an adventure in upgrading your life. Level up! Once you have those new skills or access to those people, you can leverage your new skills and relationships to launch what’s next for you.

15. Because the more flexible you are on compensation, the more deals you can do, and you can do them faster. Growing a business is about building relationships. Relationships get built by getting deals done. The more flexible you are, the more deals you can get done and you can get them done faster. That means you are growing your business and your relationship base faster. Opportunities beget opportunities. The more you work, the more you work. The more you work, the greater the opportunities. Speed in deal making means more money. The lower the friction in the deal, the easier it is to make the deal happen. Think about the world of difference between trying to do a deal with a person who clicks the cash only button and someone who clicks the Let’s get Creative button. I’m pretty sure I can find a way to get a deal done with someone who is willing to get creative.

16. Because it gets you STARTED! When I opened my first training business, my first two clients were barter clients. Since I didn’t have any clients, businesses were reluctant to hire me. After three days of hearing nothing but no, one guy offered to trade sales training for a car stereo. I didn’t need a car stereo. I needed cash. I wanted to eat. I like food. I use it to stay alive. You can’t eat a car stereo, but I need to GET STARTED so I said yes! Lance turned out to be a great cash client over the years and a good friend, but it started with me being flexible about the compensation I was willing to accept. I also traded for carpet and gasoline. I didn’t need the carpet since I lived in a rental, but I really needed the gasoline! The point is that I now had clients! Three of them. I used them as references to sell other cash paying clients and that’s how I got my business off the ground!

17. Because you Need to Think like a Hollywood Producer. Build a Portfolio of Clients. Some movies are blockbusters. Most are not. Hollywood studios know this, but the problem is that they never know which movies will be the blockbusters…and they really don’t sweat over it. They build a portfolio of movies knowing that some will be flops, some will break-even or make a little money and some will be blockbusters on which they will get rich. You can’t know up front which companies or gigs will be the blockbusters that will make you wealthy, but if you take a portfolio approach to your career or business, you’ll find the blockbusters in your portfolio. Focus on the winners and forget about the losers, just like a Hollywood producer.

18. Because it forces creative thinking which often creates greater value and therefore greater compensation. Let’s say you are an accountant or a lawyer. You may think you should just get paid with cash like all your other clients do. But what if you got creative. What if instead of just doing accounting or drawing up a contract, you were able to become a board member or perhaps become interim CEO or CFO. Lots of startups need “adult supervision” by which I mean someone with years of business experience to guide them. That role is worth much more which means that you could get a greater share of the business and more control over how the business is run. That increases the odds that your equity becomes more valuable faster.
Let’s look at another scenario where you are approached to build a website for a startup. Building a website has value to the business, but what if you were to look at the bigger picture while discussing creative compensation. What are they going to do with the website? If they are going to generate revenue, maybe you could get a piece of that revenue. If you get a piece of the revenue, maybe you could start handling social media for them or taking on some other marketing tasks or enhancing the website by making it easier to buy products or services. You are taking on an expanded role but your value is so much higher that you can make a lot more money.

19. You can create future cash flow for when you need it most. If you are young, you probably believe that you are going to live forever, and that retirement is a LONG WAY OFF. I would urge you to consider a different view of reality on a couple of fronts. First, retirement happens when your money goes to work so you don’t have to. You can be retired at 25 if your investments are throwing off enough cash. That doesn’t mean you won’t be working, it means work is OPTIONAL! That’s always a nice place to be. Second, if you are in your twenties, you probably are thinking pretty short-term. Like maybe where am I going to get money for lunch! But the reality is that you are going to need even more money in the future when you have a mortgage, or a spouse and kids or dare I say it…retirement. You need to train your reptilian brain to think both short-term and long-term at the same time. Me personally, I’d be setting up meetings with companies with the hope that they want to make it a LUNCH meeting, so I can get fed AND start building cash for my future. By making equity or partnership agreements early, you can start building long-term wealth while you focus on short-term income as well. Because, you WILL need income in the future and most likely MORE OF IT! Start building it now and your future self with be really happy with you! Had you been doing this 10 years ago, you’d have it by now!

20. Because it stirs up the marketplace and builds your reputation. You will be getting your name and skills out there so more people know what you do. I recently had a friend calling me looking for gigs. I got him some unpaid gigs but those led to some really good paying gigs. If you’re not maxed out already…invest in stirring the marketplace. The more people who know what you do, the more gigs you will get! Adam Grant in his amazing book Give and Take proves that if you build a reputation as a giver, you will be paid back many-fold. Being known as a giver make people want to do business with you and they will bring many opportunities your way.

21. Because you can give your knowledge away and still have it. This is one of the most profound truths in the universe. Knowledge and love are both infinite. You can give all you have away and you still have it…but a miraculous thing happens…it actually multiplies and comes back to you. Other will share their knowledge and love with you and you’ll have more.

22. Because breakdowns create breakthroughs. The world breaks down. It’s the second law of thermodynamics. The world is always moving from order to chaos. Yet, every breakdown is an opportunity for a breakthrough. Getting with other like-minded people and working on the problem always results in a breakthrough. Yours is waiting, but you have to jump in!

23. Partners make impossible things possible. I’ve been amazed many times by the seemingly impossible things partners make possible. They know things you didn’t know they knew, they have connections you didn’t think they had, they have ideas that can catapult your career and your life to new heights. You might even discover that they have actual money. You never know until you talk. I have many partners in many industries and most of them have genius that simply don’t possess. They have made many things possible that I previously believed were impossible. Find the right partner is magic, and that is the magic of PartnerHere.

24. Because you become the average of the 5 people you hang out with most. If your five best friends are stoners, you are probably not the most ambitious person on the planet! But if that were true, you wouldn’t be watching this video. My point is that you want to be smart and successful, you need to hang out with the smartest and most successful people on the planet. My point here is that cash compensation is just one small way you get compensated. I just read an article yesterday by Mark Cuban in which he said the most important thing you should be looking for is a job where they pay you to learn. Getting some form of alternative compensation while hanging out and learning from the smartest and most successful people you can find is how you take your game to the next level. When I moved from Buffalo, NY to La Jolla, CA, and started hanging out with Dr. Tony Alessandra and Dr. John Lee and Dr. Layne Longfellow, the quality of my conversations changed so dramatically I cannot even begin to describe them. These guys wouldn’t have a lunch discussion around any idea that wouldn’t generate at least a million dollars. I couldn’t even participate in many of the conversation for the first few months. But then something miraculous happened. My outlook and my thinking changed. I began to think like a multi-millionaire. When you start thinking like that, you start acting like that…and in just a few short years…I was there too. Up your game. Up your gang….on PartnerHere.

25. Because you can help out a fellow entrepreneur and make the world a better place. If you are a true entrepreneur, you know how painful it can be when you really need something to start or grow your business and you can’t access it. Consider alternative compensation or no compensation at all just to help a fellow entrepreneur. It will make you feel good and it will make the world a better place.

26. Because You can practice being selfless. As entrepreneurs, we can sometimes be a selfish lot. We can be so focused on ourselves and growing our business that we forget how important it is to practice selflessness. Try doing something for alternative compensation just to practice being selfless. Exercise your selfless muscles. You’ll be glad you did.

27. Because it gives you control over your career, your life and your destiny. We have learned to depend on “a JOB” for our livelihood. That is dangerous as we are currently seeing with the Covid-19 crisis. If you depend on a job for your income and lifestyle, they control you and your future. Learning how to use alternative compensation in all of its forms, makes you much more resilient to future shocks and unfavorable conditions. The world is a crazy place and the more flexible and creative you are, the more likely you are going to be able to thrive in any market condition.

28. Because it grows the economy and a rising tide lifts all boats. Keeping the economy moving at full speed is good for everyone, so if you have excess capacity that you cannot currently sell for cash, why not sell it for alternative compensation. The more deals that are being done in an economy, the faster it accelerates and the more money there is circulating, the better everyone does. So why not max out your capacity and as we all do the same thing, we’ll ensure the economy stay strong for all of us.

29. Because everyone needs to know how to bootstrap a business. Bootstrapping is a term that comes from the loops at the top of your cowboy boots. They are there to help you put on your boots so you can go to work. “Pulling yourself up from your bootstraps” comes from the same reference. So bootstrapping a business means starting it with nothing and turning it into something. If everyone knew how to do that, we wouldn’t have 25% unemployment and global recessions. One of our goals at PartnerHere is to teach the world how to bootstrap a business. Jump in and learn with us. Offer your products or services using alternative compensation and let’s bootstrap the world!

30. Because you meet the nicest people on PartnerHere! I believe that bootstrappers are innovative, fun, optimistic, creative people who love other innovative, fun, optimistic and creative people. That’s who we are trying to attract to PartnerHere. So if that description fits you, join us. If it fits your friends or colleagues, invite them to join. We are a community of can-do optimists who are trying to bootstrap our businesses to extraordinary success. Come join us and let’s get the economy moving again and keep it that way!

There are many other reasons why you should consider alternative compensation, but I hope I’ve stimulated your thinking a bit, here. There is HUGE POWER in alternative compensation because it enables you to make a deal happen where cash alone will not. The more deals you do, the greater your chance of creating real wealth…and that’s one of the best reasons for hanging out at PartnerHere.com.

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