I was reading Steve Pavlina's blog post about "Making Money Consciously" and I came upon a nice defination of social and personal values.
If you want to earn income as a contributor, you must contribute social value, not personal value. Many would-be contributors get stuck on this concept. Personal value is whatever you say it is Ã¢Â€Â” you're free to decide what has value to you personally, and it doesn't matter if no one agrees with you. Social value, however, is assigned by social consensus. If you believe your work has tremendous value, but virtually no one else does, then your work has high personal value but little or no social value. Here's the key point: your income depends on the social value of your work, not the personal value.
This reminded me of an article by Paul Graham called "Mind the Gap". Graham says in that article
In a free market, prices are determined by what buyers want. People like baseball more than poetry, so baseball players make more than poets. To say that a certain kind of work is underpaid is thus identical with saying that people want the wrong things.
This brings me to what I have been thinking about. There are people
who say that they are not recognized or rewarded well enough for their
work. If we ignore the edge cases, in most of the cases that I have
seen, people do get rewarded for adding value to the organization they
work for or for adding value to their customers.
Another thing that I have heard quite a few people whine about is how
IT-people or the techies (grr — how much I hate both those terms)
make so much more money than the other people in different occupations
but with the same years of experience. Maybe the techies are adding
more value to their customers or the organizations and that is why
they are getting paid more.
Link: Making Money Consciously and Mind the Gap