Make investments today to personal selling pricing tomorrow

Homeowners are always renovating with an eye on resale value.

Whether it’s a basement remodel, deck addition, roof replacement, kitchen counter upgrade, or installing a multi lane racer waterslide from your bedroom window into your saltwater swimming pool, anything you can do to boost your selling price down the road is a worthwhile investment.

Even if it’s frustrating and expensive and not especially gratifying in the moment.

During my time as a homeowner, my real estate agent made a strong recommendation for installing a new air conditioning system around five years into my ownership. And based on the cost and labor involved, it seemed like a superfluous renovation.

Especially since my current system, while a bit outdated, worked fine.

But my agent promised that the few weeks of aggravation and three thousand dollar expense were worth the resale value down the road. His data showed it would quickly increase my home’s marketability.

Five years later when the recession ended and we put our condo on the market, his hypothesis proved out. Not only had our zip code appreciated significantly, but the property itself had become more attractive to buyers, especially in the brutally humid summer months, thanks to our pristine air conditioning unit.

I ended up making a significant profit on the sale, the proceeds of which went into my savings, not to mention a celebratory vacation to wrap up ten years of the pain the ass known as home ownership.

To me, the big lesson here isn’t about real estate, it was about resale value. This is a concept each of us can apply to our own personal and professional development.

Because in the arc of our careers, we will all work jobs that include tasks, projects and activities that are not particularly satisfying or enjoyable in the moment. Truth is, some of them are mind numbingly dreadful and make us want to smash our heads against a rusty nail.

But if we keep an eye on the resale value of our work experience, it makes the suffering easier to swallow. If we learn to tell ourselves a meaningful story about our own struggle, it fuels us do make investments today that boost our personal selling pricing tomorrow.

Adams’s book on failing his way to success as the world’s most famous cartoonist suggests we think of each new skill we acquire as doubling our odds of success and increasing our market value. While not literally true, he reminds us, this construct helps guide our behavior in a productive direction. It tricks our brain about the pursuit of success. Looking at the familiar in new ways can change our behavior when the new point of view focuses on the imaginary.

What if you started thinking of every crappy work experience as an asset that appreciates in economic value every day that you show up?

It may make boring meetings and seemingly useless projects more sufferable. As they say in the real estate world, your home is your castle, but it’s also an investment to care for and manage.

Same goes for your professional house. Keep an eye on resale value, and you’ll boost your selling price down the road.

Even if the team you work with today doesn’t value the work you’re doing, some company down the road might be waiting for you to deliver that very experience to enhance their organization. 

What have you done in the last thirty days to increase your personal and professional marketability?


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Author. Speaker. Strategist. Songwriter. Filmmaker. Inventor. Gameshow Host. World Record Holder. I also wear a nametag 24-7. Even to bed.
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