Seth Godin: Generous doesn’t mean free

Too often the market pushes creators to give away their work, and too often we come to believe that giving it away – removing money from the interaction – is the most generous thing we can do. But that’s not the case.

Money supports our commitment to the practice. Money permits us to turn professional, to focus our energy and our time on the work, creating more impact and more connection, not less.

And more importantly, money is how our society signifies enrollment. The person who has paid for your scarce time and scarce output is more likely to value it, to share it, and to take it seriously.

Generous doesn’t require us to reduce friction by making things free. It requires us to bring bravery and passion and empathy to the people we seek to serve. And that often requires tension on the part of the audience.

It’s tempting to hide by creating deniability: “What did you expect? It was free.” But often the act of charging for the work creates a generous outcome, because our work is to cause change, not make ourselves invisible and free.

Seth GodinThe Practice

See also:

Bootstrapping the non-profit organisation Rule 3: Serve Clients Eager to Pay for what you do

What if it was free?

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