I had 6 supervisors across my 15 years on the Street that gave me my bonus number around this time of the year. The conversations were identical. They gave me my number and proceeded to talk.

I stopped listening after the number. I had my expectation, and therefore was looking for any differences from what was in my mind. Nothing else in the conversation mattered. I couldn’t eat their words, pay for my kids’ private school education with them, or take my wife on vacation with them.

Nothing else mattered but the number. The sole value Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse placed on my work product was the money.

Money is the only commercial currency for respect

Please keep in mind that you have a commercial relationship with your employer. You may have personal relationships with people, but you do not have a personal relationship with an entity called an employer.

Your employer is playing a very simple role in our economy: Paying you the least amount of money to extract the greatest amount of your utility.

Some famous quotes from Adam Smith, the Father of Modern Economics:

•    Man is an animal that makes bargains, no other animal does this…
•    Labor was the first price, the original price – money that was paid for all things
•    A merchant . . . is not necessarily the citizen of any particular country

Don’t you want to be respected as a person?

Some people say that money, power, and respect are the keys to life. We all want to be respected for the job we do. In our family, friendships, volunteer work and job. Is respect too much to ask for? Clearly, Aretha Franklin does not think so.

After working for a full year, sacrificing vacations, time with family, late nights of putting together pitchbooks, and busting your hump, at the end of the day, validation is what we really want, isn’t it?

Isn’t validation just another sign of respect?

Were you respected this year?

As a financial services career coach I do my best to stay on top of the industry headlines. You have probably heard what I have heard — “Up 20-35% depending upon your sector.” How was your number against the backdrop of:

•    The best M&A year ever on the Street
•    The lowest interest rate environment we may ever see again
•    The hottest job market we have ever experienced
•    FinTech stealing many of the best and brightest

If you are satisfied, you can stop reading and maybe email this article to friends who weren’t. If you were not, why not?

Don’t let them fool you with excuses

I’ve heard them all. We couldn’t get you to your number since:

•    Equities had a better year than Fixed Income
•    That blowup on the other side of the firm hurt everyone
•    London killed it more than the US
•    You didn’t do the biggest deal of our group

Maybe you can pay your mortgage with excuses, but I can’t. The companies I worked for could not even show me a basic sign of respect.

The only way to get paid fairly is to leave your job!

There is an adage in financial services that until you mark yourself to market, you will never be paid fair value. In other words, the only way to get paid fairly is to leave your job.

To read my personal story of how I increased his compensation by 3x upon moving from Merrill Lynch to Credit Suisse, click I deserve better.

To read my client’s story when he moved from the Street to FinTech, please click here.

What you want
Baby, I got it
What you need
Do you know I got it?
All I’m askin’
Is for a little respect
When you come home
(just a little bit)
Hey, baby
(just a little bit)
When you get home
(just a little bit)
Mister
(just a little bit)
I ain’t gonna do you wrong
While you’re gone
Ain’t gonna do you wrong
‘Cause I don’t wanna
All I’m askin’
Is for a little respect
When you come home
(just a little bit)
Baby
(just a little bit)
When you get home
(just a little bit)
Yeah
(just a little bit)
I’m about to give you all of my money
And all I’m askin’ in return, honey
Is to give me my propers
When you get home
(just a, just a, just a, just a)
Yeah, baby
(just a, just a, just a, just a)
When you get home
(just a little bit)
Yeah
(just a little bit)
Ooh, your kisses
Sweeter than honey
And guess what?
So is my money
All I want you to do for me
Is give it to me when you get home
(re, re, re ,re)
Yeah, baby
(re, re, re ,re)
Whip it to me
(respect, just a little bit)
When you get home, now
(just a little bit)
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
Find out what it means to me
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
Take care, TCB
Oh (sock it to me, sock it to me
Sock it to me, sock it to me)
A little respect
(sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me)
Whoa, babe
(just a little bit)
A little respect
(just a little bit)
I get tired
(just a little bit)
Keep on tryin’
(just a little bit)
You’re runnin’ out of foolin’
(just a little bit)
And I ain’t lyin’
(just a little bit)
(re, re, re, re) ‘spect
When you come home
(re, re, re, re)
Or you might walk in
(respect, just a little bit)
And find out I’m gone
(just a little bit)
I got to have
(just a little bit)

Bottom line

If you didn’t like your number, you weren’t respected. To regain your respect, click below

 

“Let’s Talk Mike, I Need Respect”

Click Here

Layoffs season is coming. Join my workshop to prepare yourself.