Lead on Purpose

Promoting Leadership Principles in Product Management

Time value of experience

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Time value of experienceTime value of money is a widely understood and accepted concept. At its most basic level the time value of money demonstrates that, all things being equal, it is better to have a fixed amount of money today, rather than an equal amount in the future. The concepts get more complex with topics such as compounding interest, present value of annuities, future value of growing annuities, etc. (Check out Wikipedia for a detailed description.) Receiving a fixed amount of money today, rather than waiting, is valuable because you can put the money to work doing things to build wealth and prepare for the future.

That brings me to the time value of experience. What if you were to look at life experiences as if they were money? They bring value and provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to move forward and progress through your life. Experiences provide a type of life currency. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to experience things today rather than to postpone them to a later date. They will be more valuable to you now than in the future. Granted, there are many experiences you cannot control. However, for the things you can control, the sooner you have the experiences the quicker you can invest them to improving your life and to helping others. Since leadership is largely based on experience, it makes sense to acquire as much experience as soon as possible.

Take advantage of every opportunity to do things that you know you want to as soon as you can. Think about something you’ve wanted to do for a long time, but for whatever reason you’ve postponed. Commit to yourself that you will do it. Having that experience today will most likely be more valuable than having the same experience in the future.

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One thought on “Time value of experience

  1. Then again, the opposite could be true. – I paid too much for it, but its worth it. – Samuel Goldwyn 1882 – 1974

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