How to Create Outstanding Value

“Value”

A word with many meanings. With our current economic situation I have been thinking about this one word a lot…

What is Value?

After much contemplation over the word value I have determined it to mean this: Something has value if it fulfills a need in the most worthwhile way possible for all parties.

Now let me expand…

We all have needs. From the most basic, such as food and shelter, up to the most complex, such as the computer I am using to write this to you.

Many people help to create these things that I buy and consume. I pay them money to fulfill these needs of mine. I also provide value to other people so that I may earn the money I need to buy the things I value. This makes value seem like a money thing when it really isn’t.

You see, money is simply a tool. The intermediary, if you will, between my value and another person’s value. It is a tool used for sheer expediency and efficiency and nothing more or less. This is why we must seperate our thinking about value from our thoughts about money.

People value different things differently. In a free marketplace valuations are determined based on a number of factors such as supply and demand. There is not one set supply of something and there is certainly not one set demand for something. They are constantly changing.

For instance, I may “demand” a tv priced at $500. Many people are willing to pay $1000 for the same tv. The demand is there but only at a certain level. My actual demand won’t be created until they can supply the tv for less. Until then that tv has zero value for me!

It is important to understand some of the economics behind value so that we can begin to separate things out and make some real sense of what exactly value is.

We create value when we go to work everyday, when we put food on the table for our loved ones, when we volunteer our time, when we make someone laugh to cheer them up, and even when we write or talk about our life experiences so that others can enjoy them and use them to live better lives.

When we give someone our hard earned money in the form of a donation or charity, or in the form of buying them food we are NOT creating value. Why? Because they will buy something that has REAL value with that money, or the food you bought them would be the real value for them, created not by you, but by the restaurant.

I think this is an important distinction to make if we are ever going to understand what is valuable and what is not in this crazy world. Money is not the answer.

What is the answer?

I believe the real answer is to simply ask yourself this question…

How can I best fulfill someone else’s needs in this world in a worthwhile manner?

We all value things differently and we all have our values. It is good and honorable to have values. We all could probably use some more values in our lives, and by that I mean, we could all use more lived out values.

You see, value is not created until there is action. Value is not created when money exchanges hands. It is created before then. Sometimes long before then. Such as when the master craftsman is still in training to perfect his or her craft.

Each person is given a certain amount of ability, talent, and opportunity in life. Some squander it and some use it to the full extent. Often we are unaware of our full abilily to create value.

How then do we create outstanding value?

By pushing the limits and becoming most outstanding at being of service to people to fulfill their needs.

That’s it, now let’s make it happen!

I’ll leave you with a quote by Bessie Stanley that I believe sums things up nicely…

To laugh often and much;
To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends;
To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others;
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is to have succeeded.

– I would reword the final line to make it something like this, “…to have succeeded and to have created much value in the world.” ;-)

Comments

  1. Very enjoyable read. The positivity and the *insight* are amazing. Adding value is one of the few ways left to really rise, no matter which business you are in. For a service business this is especially important. The ones that will still be up and running in a year are the ones who understand this concept.

    George

    Tumblemoose’s last blog post..This little piggy went to market

  2. I love that quote!!!

    This is a very good article,Jeremy.
    The thing is people are most important and what is exchanged is insightful wisdom and friendships build.
    We can learn from each and every person that comes into our lives.This is absolutely priceless.

    Bunny got Blog’s last blog post..Chocolate Cherry Kiss Cocktail

  3. To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. <—- I love this one! :-)

    Great post, Jeremy. I gave it a stumble to help spread the value… ;-)

    *smiles*
    Michele

    Michele’s last blog post..Don’t Let Your Past Keep You from Your Future

  4. Hi Jeremy,

    In this world, being able to provide value to others is a great trait that everyone try to achieve. Whenever we are working or even starting a business, we are trying to provide something of value to others. This is an important trait that we need to learn and refine in order to achieve success in life.

    Cheers
    Vincent
    Personal Development Blogger

    Vincent’s last blog post..Should You Eat Organic Food?

  5. Jeremy

    We seem to have very similar views on this subject!

    I especially like your point that value is not created until we actually do something (though there is plenty of value around us in the natural world) and that it’s something done by people, for people. Indeed, money is just a tool. Nothing more, nothing less. Tools are important in achieving a purpose. Making money is similar to making a hammer – pointless unless it’s actually used for making something of real value.

    Thanks for sharing your own thoughts on the subject.
    Ian

    Ian Peatey’s last blog post..In search of value

  6. Hi Jeremy. I like how you started out talking about money and ended up talking about how to add “real” value with activities that don’t involve money. Values are important to recognize because they are what cause us to make the decisions we make. Usually when things are off in our lives, it’s because we’re not honouring our values — it creates an imbalance.

    Davina’s last blog post..Shopping for Effective Attitudes

  7. I personally believe that value is not created — it is perceived — and may or may not be delivered. What one “creates” through their actions is not value; but rather something that meets someone else’s perception of value.

    I like your separation of money and value. This is an important lesson.

    It is arguably more prudent to look for Return On Investment (ROI), rather than monetary price alone. If ABC product or service has a price of $100 but its useful life is one year, it is arguably less valuable than XYZ product or service with a price of $200 and a useful life of three years. All other variables held constant, XYZ has a greater ROI than ABC…

    Great post…

    Cheers…

  8. @ George – I agree. This is really important for businesses to realize.

    @ Bunny – Taking and giving in constant communion makes the world go round.

    @ Michele – Thanks for the Stumble.

    @ Vincent – Looking more toward others rather than ourselves really is an outstanding trait to have. And beneficial for us in the long run too.

    @ Ian – Thank you for writing a great article as well!

    @ Davina – Honoring your values is really important! A lot of things will go better if you do.

    @ Kent – You make two great points. I love how you really think about the post and make insightful comments. I would have to agree on both points. Value is often perceived, but then again, are we just arguing over semantics? I totally agree about looking at things as a ROI. This is certainly handy in business and can be very useful in other areas as well. However, you would probably have to agree that some things are difficult or impossible to measure. This would make a ROI not useful in many circumstances.

    Cheers,
    Jeremy

  9. Hi Jeremy

    Very good article, arguments and thoughts. Stumbled.

    “When we give someone our hard earned money in the form of a donation or charity, or in the form of buying them food we are NOT creating value.”
    This really struck me. We are not creating value for ourselves or them. I’m coming to realise that people do not appreciate (value) free rides. It is a huge waste.

    Juliet

    LifeMadeGreat | Juliet’s last blog post..Overcoming The Barriers Of Introversion: Starting The Process

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