Have you earned your paycheck today?

At first I gasped at the thought of a CEO standing at the door on a Friday afternoon asking his employees if they had earned their paycheck that week. Then I started asking myself that very same question every end-of-day, eventually twice a day.. and it drove my productivity through the roof!

After my initial shock at hearing the comment, I reflected on how much this CEO actually cared about his people. I could see this all day long through the way he engaged his teams. Yes, he was demanding, but then again these are demanding times! Unemployment & failing companies are at all-time highs across the planet. What I was to find out was that all he was doing was instilling a sense of responsibility amongst his workforce. After-all, he was within his right.. he provided people with an opportunity to actually have a job, and he himself worked very hard to ensure the company remained profitable enough to guarantee everyone had a paycheck to receive at the end of the week.

I love to try new things myself, so the very next week, as I wrapped up each day of different client engagements, I stopped to reflect whether I had earned my paycheck that day.

80% of the time I responded with a strong affirmative YES.. but on 20% of occasions, even though I had fulfilled on my client’s (bosses) agreed expectations, deep down I knew I could give it more.

New habits formed

On some instances this lead me to put in another hour, punching my fist in the air with pride & joy as I walked out the door knowing I had given it my all. In some instances it had me adjust how I would approach my day the next morning. In either case, the feeling of satisfaction that comes from doing a great job (more than just a good job), from knowing that you’ve earned your pay, gives you a sensation of walking on clouds. It gains you greater respect amongst your colleagues, it gains the admiration of your management, and it even gains you greater praise & subsequent business from your client.

I recently won a significant deal simply based on my passion, those were the clients very words, and I know that I was extra passionate that day because of having felt that I had given it everything I had in me.

Eventually, I found myself doing this exercise at mid-day as well, and as you can imagine, my afternoons became even more productive!

It wasn’t always this simple!

I didn’t always have this focus & determination. But when I decided to start making concerted efforts in my life to change what I didn’t like about it, and that started with work, I found myself more enthusiastic about taking on more challenges & looking my boss in the eye at the end of each day to say; “yes, today I more than earned my paycheck”!

How about you? Did you earn your paycheck this past week? What’s the challenge your facing when you ask yourself this question? What needs to change in order for you to punch the air with joy, and respond with an affirming  powerful response?

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