How Much is Your Sales Work Worth?

By Mike Coday •  Updated: 10/21/23 •  6 min read

Getting Paid More

Have you ever looked around at all the other people making money and thought, “I’m not getting paid enough money for what I do around here. I should be making a lot more money. How come they make so much?”

Just for the sake of conversation, let’s take a roofing installer who puts on a quality product with excellent craftsmanship. Is that installer more or less valuable in the marketplace?

Will a quality installer get paid more money or will they be paid less money than a crappy installer?

I personally believe an installer who is better than everybody else can and should earn top dollar because they are more valuable than the next guy. Do you agree with me?

How much more depends entirely on how much more valuable they are as an installer compared to the next best installer.

We all know that good metal roof installers get paid a lot more than comp installers just like good nailers make more than guys working clean-up on a job site. Generally speaking, good gets paid more than bad, and experts get paid more than novices.

Quick Summary

  1. Frustration over Disparity: The article taps into the common feeling of frustration that workers often feel when they perceive that their compensation does not match their effort or skill level, especially compared to others.
  2. Validation and Self-Worth: It touches on the emotional need for one’s work quality to be recognized and valued appropriately, suggesting that superior skill should naturally warrant higher pay, thereby validating one’s self-worth and expertise.
  3. Disillusionment with Market Fairness: There’s an underlying sense of disillusionment or injustice that the market does not always recognize quality, as evidenced by insurance companies’ indifference to the craftsmanship level of contractors.
  4. Struggle for Recognition: The piece conveys the emotional struggle craftsmen and salespeople undergo in proving their value in a marketplace that may not readily acknowledge their worth.
  5. Responsibility and Self-Reflection: It introduces a moment of introspection, encouraging individuals to take emotional responsibility for their perceived value and understand that it’s up to them to command the respect and compensation they seek.
  6. Skepticism Towards Altruism: The article expresses skepticism toward those who claim they work for the love of the craft, hinting at the emotional complexity and potential dishonesty in such statements, given the practical financial needs people have.
  7. Universal Desire for Betterment: It empathizes with the universal desire among workers to be compensated more generously for their efforts, acknowledging the emotional and practical reasons behind this aspiration.
  8. Anxiety over Sustainability: The piece hints at the anxiety that salespeople might feel about their long-term success being tied to consistently meeting high market standards, which can be emotionally taxing.
  9. Empowerment through Adaptation: It offers a sense of empowerment by suggesting that individuals have the power to change their circumstances, either by convincing the market of their worth or finding a market that recognizes it.
  10. Identity and Purpose: Lastly, the closing reflects on the author’s personal journey and identity, emphasizing that the focus on sales comes from a place of understanding its value and the emotional fulfillment derived from helping others succeed in this arena.

Buyer Determines Value

Regardless of how good or bad, expert or novice, a contractor may be, we all get paid based on our value to the person paying the invoice; not based on our own estimation of what we think we’re worth. If we don’t like the pay, we don’t have to do the work.

I’ve noticed that insurance companies paying out claims don’t make a distinction between good, bad, or average installers. They price all of the work the same regardless of the quality or workmanship of the contractor who will eventually do the work.

We all know there are varying degrees of craftsmanship in the marketplace. We also know crap when we see it, but quality is a subjective term that is defined by whoever is paying the bill.

Some craftsmen are twice as good as the average while others are twice as bad. That much is obvious, but ultimately what an installer gets paid for their quality and craftsmanship is settled by the market.

Valuable installers get paid more than bad or even average installers.

My worth, how much money I make for my work, is ultimately decided by what the highest bidder is willing to pay me.

Just because I say I’m amazing doesn’t make the guy paying me reach a little deeper into his pocket.

That’s not how this game works. I actually have to be better and more valuable to the guy paying me in order to get paid more.

My Value and My Responsibility

If I’m not getting paid what I think I’m worth, it’s not the fault of the person paying me.

How little I get paid is my fault for not being valuable enough to demand a higher price. Cry as much as I like, my value is my fault and my responsibility.

It is at this point that some people might say they would work for the pure enjoyment of their craft. Some even go as far as saying they would work for free.

I don’t believe most people who claim these things. Take away their paycheck, or offer to pay less than what they’re getting now, and you’ll hear how loud they scream.

We Want More

Installers, craftsmen, and salespeople all have this in common… they would like to get paid more.

The same rules of value and being valuable to your marketplace apply to both the quality installer and the salesperson.

Quality and craftsmanship are cornerstones of success for a roofing salesperson. If the quality the market demands, and is willing to pay for, isn’t there, a salesperson won’t have much long-term success.

A salesperson who is having long-term success is typically meeting and exceeding what their market’s expectation of quality and craftsmanship is demanding.

Similarly, a quality craftsman who isn’t getting paid what they believe they’re worth either needs to do a better job selling their worth to their marketplace — something I know a few things about — or they need to find a different market that will agree with what they think they’re worth.

Again, you don’t have to do the work if you don’t like the pay you’re being offered.

One Last Thought

If this website was called “Roofing Installer” you might read more articles from a quality and craftsmanship point of view. Workmanship would probably be my primary focus because that is how I would prove my value to my marketplace.

But I’m not an installer.

I started in this business as a salesperson, and that’s why I focus all of the articles on this website around making more money in sales. I talk about the craftsmanship of selling, getting quality pay, and becoming more valuable.

That’s almost exclusively what I write about here because selling is what makes you valuable to your company.


P.S. If you’re a roofing company owner, follow me on my consulting website for more valuable information.

Mike Coday

Mike started selling roofs in '95 while working as a youth pastor at a small church in North Texas. A decade later he transitioned to speaking at industry conferences and training outside sales teams. Today, he works exclusively as the premier consultant to roofing company owners who are driven for growth.