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  • catherine stemper

Time v. Money

Everyone is talking about inflation. It is on my mind too. Setting pricing is a struggle for many artists. Most of my career, I feel my items were fairly priced, if not underpriced. Yet I was in a place both mentally and physically that I did not think the market could bear what I wanted to charge. I undervalued my time. Many self employed and creative types do this. Many people do this, no matter how they earn their money. The historically low unemployment rates are enlightening the labor community, and the employers to the real value of time.


A fundamental rule of business is time equals money. How does one figure the value of time? Early in my career, I undervalued my time because I was young, could work around the clock, considered some of my "work" as social time, was young, had lots of life to live. I figured my time was of no cost. Now, I see my time as a true expenditure. Any time I am doing something related to this business, I am working, on the clock, should be getting paid. Before, I used to consider production hours as the only "paid" time. Now, I am much more careful to consider all the time I use for the business. Production time is very valuable. My skills are very valuable, Demand is up, and that puts pressure on the value of my time.


My skills are very valuable. Employers everywhere are learning this lesson. Laborers everywhere should, and are, taking advantage of this. The laborers' time is more valuable because there is a high demand for their time. Demand is high because there are labor shortages. Demand is high. When demand is high and labor shortages exist, prices go up.

You may have noticed some of my prices have gone up. Business has been good. I am so very grateful. I love my job. I love making and selling my jewelry. I have come to understand how skilled I am, and how valuable my skills are. My time has become more valuable too.


I hope in these strange and historic times, that the labor movement has a golden age of awareness and growth. Respect hourly wage earners and support union workers. A strong society is built on labor, business, and government working together to support it.


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