One summer I was invited to work for the husband of a family friend. The job was mindless, something anyone could do. It was also repetitive and mindless. But the pay was pretty good for a teenage kid, and I needed the money.
I worked harder than anyone around me. I also worked faster than anyone around me. I was doubling and tripling the output of the full time employees, and it was not going unnoticed. The managers and supervisors were impressed, and they praised my work, even though I did not believe there was anything exceptional to what I was doing.
At break, a number of the full time employees cornered me. They told me to slow down to the pace of the rest of the workers there. They told me that I was making them look bad, and that they were being paid for that level of production, so they weren’t going to work any harder.
I was too young to know how to handle it, and I was intimidated by a group of much older people cornering me to insist I slow down. So, I ended up finding a way to work by myself, and at my own pace.
Up until this point, I wasn’t aware that this mindset existed.
Here’s the thing. When you do only the minimum work you are capable of, you will only be paid the minimum amount commensurate with that work. Withholding the real value you can create only ensures that you are never earn what you are capable of earning.
The full time employees believed they were punishing the company by producing less than they were capable of, but in reality, they were taking money out of their pockets.
A poor mindset leads to poor activities and poor results. Do the work you are capable of.
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