Culture & Engagement

Million Dollar Dream… Minimum Wage Work Ethic?

happy employee

Have you ever heard the quote “You can’t achieve a million dollar dream with a minimum wage work ethic”?


This inspirational quote is mainly used for encouraging people to value their skills more, and to look for meaningful employment beyond the basic burger bar. Essentially, it’s a quote that’s saying “how do you expect to land your dream job if you’re happy settling for minimum wage?”


But can we take something from this quote as employers? Or is it just a load of washy nonsense meant for struggling job-seekers?


I think we can absolutely take something from it – I think anybody with a vested interest in their company’s success can benefit from this type of thinking (business owners, recruiters, HR managers, etc.).


Here’s how I understand this quote:


– Stop trying to squeeze every ounce of labour out of every penny you spend – instead of worrying about accounting for every single second, worry about promoting innovation, hard work and company culture. Otherwise, you’ll end up de-motivating your workforce and burning them out (not the winning ingredients to a productive, engaged team).


– Don’t be afraid of offering attractive wages – great wages bring you the kind of talent with the million dollar dream, and those are often the kind of people you want to employ. If you offer only minimum wage, then don’t be surprised if most of your new recruits are people with a ‘minimum wage work ethic’.


– Be generous with performance-related bonuses and incentives – your people will love the opportunity to boost their wage, and you have more control over driving the precise results your business needs to succeed.


How else does this quote apply to business owners, recruiters and HR managers?