The Startup
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The Startup

Hobby, Amateur, Professional — How you treat your career will determine how it treats you.

There are vast disparities in income levels between people, industries and positions. Even amongst similar industries and companies, you will find people struggling to make it, others earning a living wage while a few are exponentially higher up the pay scale.

The question is, can you choose which level you attain?

Let’s look at the following example as an analogy for this. I am a sports fanatics and love everything about it. The competition, the comradery, the challenge, and the fun that it provides.

I have had some success throughout my sporting careers in various disciplines but I haven’t however made it a career…at least not yet ;)

In Canada, a popular sport would Ice Hockey. Now, you could say that I have made it a hobby. I love to play the sport, still participate in tournaments from time to time and garage leagues. But my junior hockey days are done and I don’t get paid to play…I pay to play!

Even as a Junior Hockey player, it was considered a sport and not a career. This would be called a Hobby.

I simply play for fun, once in a while and don’t necessarily make this my main thing. I’m ok to pay for it for my entertainment or pleasure and don’t expect to earn little or anything for it. My effort level and involvement are reflective of the income I receive.

Applying this to a job or career would be the equivalent of a ‘’side job’’.

You do it for fun, make a few bucks and that’s about it. You haven’t turned it into a business or career yet and your income basically pays for your hobby.

Now if I would have made it a few levels higher and reached say the lower level leagues and play at the Amateur level, I would have gotten paid perhaps a living wage and maybe use it to supplement my income from a day-to-day job.

Many lower leagues in the world will pay anywhere from a few hundred dollars per week to a few thousand. Allowing the players to make ends meet but nothing more.

As a career, you will find here the people who went to school, got good grades and gotten the degree, they work hard and keep their nose clean but don’t go the extra mile. They make a living but won’t ever get paid like a true professional.

If I would have made it to the professional ranks however and play in the top league in the world — the NHL, my income as a professional would have been many times that of an amateur.

There are fewer than 700 players signed to professional NHL contracts every year and even if you added the other professional leagues from around the world, the number of hockey players who could consider what they do as a career would be less than 10,000.

Considering there are 1,7 million registered hockey players in the world the odds are long against ‘’ making it’’. On the other hand the ‘’Professionals’’ make way more than your average amateur.

At the time of this writing, the average NHL player makes over $3.5 Million dollars with the highest paid player being its newest star Connor McDavid at an average annual salary of $12,5M for 8 years making him a cool $100,000,000.00 plus sponsorship deals.

Not bad!

Here from a career perspective, you will find the top income earners in any profession. They are the ones making CEO money, are industry leading experts and get paid more for what they know, than for what they do.

The analogy of a Hobby — Amateur — Professional can also apply to careers in various ways. It is important when starting out into a career path to figure out how far you want to go, and what you are willing to do to earn it.

While some professions such as hockey described above require specific physical skills that may not apply to all, many are open to those who demonstrate the hunger and work ethic to climb the proverbial career ladder.

Treating your career as a hobby will bring you hobby results if you have a career at all. You will go from job to job without ever finding any stability. Worst, unlike a hobby you might enjoy, here you might end up doing something you don’t even like to do!

As an amateur, you will already be doing 95% of what is required to succeed and make a good living. But you will never push through to the elite income levels of your industry unless you do the next 5% that professionals do.

Only those who treat their career as a professional can expect to be paid like one. They go the extra mile, read more on the industry, continue to educate themselves not only on the topic at hand but also with all around life skills, work skills, and money skills to succeed.

They are willing to do the extra 5% others aren’t and by doing so get into the top 5% of earners. What you need to understand is that much like in professional sports, the difference between being in the top 5% of earners is exponentially higher.

The best of the best in any industry will get paid 10X more even than those at the bottom of the top 5% and 100X more than the average.

To wrap this up, the lesson here is that if you treat any job or job search as a hobby, you will get paid like a hobby and it the long run it will end up costing you money.

Bring it up one notch to the amateur level and do most of what we teach in our program and book and you will get paid as an amateur and most likely get a nice increase in salary and benefits.

However, are you willing to do everything we suggest in our program and book then apply it diligently? I believe you will dominate your industry over time, become a professional and get paid like one!



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