Time and Money

Time and Money

(Source: Flickr)

If you had all the time in the world but not much money, then your capacity to create new ideas and connect with people would be great, but your capacity to consume would be limited.

On the other hand, if you didn’t have much time but had a lot of money, then your capacity to create new ideas and connect with people would be limited, but your ability to consume would be considerable.

Time and money, where should we be placing value?

This is not just a question for individuals but also for organisations.

Universities appear to value time over money (at least this was traditionally the case), and so tend to be geared towards sharing ideas and enabling people to connect with one another.

Many corporations today take the opposite approach and value money over time, and so tend to be geared towards maximising short term earnings. Employees are required to be in the office regardless of whether this improves productivity, initiatives that provide value to consumers but don’t generate revenue get discontinued, and the mantra “time is money” might on occasion be heard echoing through the hallways.

Companies will of course need to keep an eye on cash flows, but important strategic decisions should not be held hostage by the quarterly earnings report.

A resilient company will be one that has freedom to maneuver and sufficient time to anticipate new opportunities and respond to impending threats in a thoughtful and considered way.

Free Is Never Free

Your time has value

Economists are fond of telling us that “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.”

Whether it’s fish and chips for lunch, or something else, what they mean by this is that it’s not possible to get something for nothing.

But hold on, you might be thinking, surely this isn’t true. Just think about Facebook. It’s free isn’t it?

Not exactly.

While Facebook may be free in financial terms, you also need to think about your opportunity cost. That is, what other things could you be doing with your time?

If you spend an hour, then that’s 60 minutes gone.

Since each of us has 24 hours in a day, we each have a choice about how to spend our time.

Are you spending time this week to enhance your reputation, your network, your skills and your knowledge? Or are you just camping out, getting by and working for the weekend?

You can always earn more money, but you can’t get more time.