Paychecks are important. But what your job enables beyond money is important as well.
I consider part of my compensation to be the freedom to drop my kids off at school, and get to the office “late”, when I’m not traveling.
I consider part of my compensation to be the freedom to forego conferences that land during the week of Halloween.
I consider part of my compensation to be the freedom to NOT make more money. By choosing to pass up certain opportunities that would require me to miss time with my family, or compromise my health & wellness goals, I am perhaps giving up additional monetary income. But that decision, and the benefits of spending some of that time elsewhere, is absolutely part of my compensation.
Instead of asking how much money I take home, I ask myself what this job enables me to do. There are professional and personal answers to that question. The money enables some of those goals. The time and freedom enables more.
I absolutely would not have appreciated this distinction earlier in my career. But time and kids have helped me see a broader picture and definition.
This isn’t just an owner or founder thing. We all have this choice, this freedom to choose and define what we want our compensation to truly be.
Yet another thing to be thankful for this week.