Every entrepreneur finds themselves in a delicate thought situation: what should I cherish more, net-worth or self-worth? Many tend to devote themselves to building the net-worth, led by the logic that the self-worth will come with it. But is that the truth you can rely on?
With more net-worth comes more respect, more influence. But that respect is fake — it’s grounded on what you own, instead on who you are and what values you aspire to.
Think of it this way: you want to be a cool kid in the school, like that funny kid Brian is, so you get a fancy cabrio. Your classmates love you more than ever — you drop them off after the classes, give them a cool ride through the city, help them get somewhere in time. But one day, you decide to take a walk to school, and nobody notices you again — you can’t even find a ride back home. What you say is not relevant, you struggle to gain attention, while that funny kid Brian is in the spotlight no matter what.
With net-worth ruling over, you’re nothing but your money and assets minus your debt. Consequently, if you lose your assets, you remain nothing.
An important lesson for entrepreneurs lies in this naive high school example: it is the distinguished self-worth that brings likeability along and makes you stand out from the crowd. Self-worth makes you memorable. Instead of being ‘that rich guy’, you become ‘THE guy’.
As an entrepreneur, you build your self-worth by changing people’s lives for better. You get to be the great reality storyteller. You get to write the history. It is important that you publicly stand for what you believe in. You must tell your story not only with compelling words, but with outstanding actions.
Don’t be afraid of negative reactions — moreover: don’t try to get everyone to like you. Doing so, you’ll get lost in a maze of compromises and soft lies, failing to establish a strong foundation for the world you want to build. Your target audience can never be everyone — even with your product serving wide masses, profiling is the key to identifying the individuals within the mass whose attention you want to gain. Changing the world for the better is often a radical action that takes no compromises.
As Mark Victor Hansen once said: “When your self-worth goes up, your net worth goes up with it.” Focus on building your self-worth — that is the key to successful entrepreneurship. Your influence will bring opportunities, trust, support, and investments.
By building your self-worth, you’ll build a stable net-worth as well. You will be recognized in the SV world, and will have the privilege of choosing your partners and your investors, because there will be those who believe in who you are and how capable you are to turn a brilliant idea into reality of all of us. Once you become the thought leader, the net-worth will come by itself — and you will only care to use it to make more ideas see the light of the day. Play smart, and don’t make it about yourself — make it about the world.