The Darker Side
Careful this is a loaded question. As soon as you lock into a value (and it's going to be less than you'd like unless you masterfully market your time), you will be pushed by those that pay your price to do things that are outside of your passion/interest space. This is a great case for setting boundaries of what you're willing to work on, and managing expectations. As a business you set prices that enable you to compete efficiently on the features you and your customers value most. Both businesses and individual workers create a wide range of value with their efforts, and it's best that price is free to fluctuate with value added (can be tricky to measure).
Ultimately other people will meet your price:
- If as a worker: Payees believe they can generate/save more wealth from your abilities than they pay you
- If as a business: Customers and other businesses value your service over alternatives. They generate more value or save time by relying on your team
The negotiation of relative value exchanged is the heart of business and collaboration, so how can we make this system more fluid?
Trust Enables Many to Act as One
The defining characteristic of the deal on the table is Trust. If both parties trust each other, they have confidence that the negotiation of services will be in both parties' best interest. If there's an impass that can't be navigated around, the payer and provider both walk away without bad feelings. Lock in deals are an immediate signal of mistrust. Good business deals communicate and clear up any unknowns at the start. The more honest both parties are about their expectations and genuine abilities going into the deal, the more fruitful the outcome is likely to be. Trust is the true currency between people, and it is the most valuable asset in any relationship. I kid around, and make light of many things in life, but trust is sacred to me. My mind is hardwired never to forget broken trust and to protect it all costs.
The Greatest Networks are Founded on Trust
Individual tolerances for trust vary as much as people do. I'd like to see social net services enable users to create trust based networks. The links in the network between users and groups will each have a public/private measure and duration of trust. In fact these links can have many properties such as connecting topics, expertise, shared business interests, etc.