An alarming Glassdoor survey found that more than half of Americans don’t negotiate their salaries. That means most people will continue working for the same pay, even as their value to the workplace and their experience increases. How can you teach your kids to not be afraid of asking for a raise?
Hopefully, your kids are ready and willing to work hard for their pay when they grow up. But do they also know that time is money?
The Lemonade Lesson
Suppose one lazy summer day, your kids decide to earn cash by holding a yard sale on your front lawn. They rush to gather many items from around the house and then they draw up some big, colorful signs to hang around the neighborhood. They carefully set out all their offerings as attractively as possible and determine a fair price for each item.
And then they sit down in front of their impromptu business and wait for the customers to show up. They wait. And wait.
They may have thought their business plan was perfect. They have (mostly) premium goods at rock-bottom prices. They marketed the event. Yet, they forgot you live in a quiet neighborhood that sees very little foot traffic.
The Learning Opportunity
As their parent, you now have two possible options. You can encourage them to continue sitting outside under the hot sun, peddling their goods and waiting impatiently for a customer. Or, you can gently explain that although their business ethic is great, it’s very likely that they may spend the entire day sitting outside in the blazing heat, coming away with only a couple bucks.
Yes, it’s important to have a solid work ethic. But everyone – even children – should only do work that is worth their time. Ask your kids: Is an entire day really worth a few dollars?
They may be disappointed and view their project as an epic failure, but you will be giving them a lesson for life. Time is important. And so are they. Throughout their working life as adults, your kids should be assured that they are getting paid enough to be worth the time they spend on the job.
Most Americans don’t ask to be paid what they’re worth. If you equip your kids with the understanding that their time is worth a lot, when the time comes, they won’t be afraid to ask for that well-deserved raise or promotion.
Give your children tools for life by teaching them that time is money.
Your Turn: How can you teach your kids to value their time?