How to Make Your Time Worth $10,000 an Hour

Sabrina Starling On Small Business

How to Make Your Time Worth $10,000 an Hour

As an entrepreneur, every hour you spend working on your business can be worth $10,000 an hour if you know where to focus your attention. Chances are, you are spending a lot of your time working in the business, engaging in activities that contribute little to the value of the business, with respect to increasing profitability and overall value. 

At the start of each week, ask yourself, “If I get nothing else done this week, what’s the one thing I can do so that everything else will be easier or unnecessary?” The answer is your $10,000-an-Hour Activity for the week.

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Ultimately, it’s about the value of the result of the activity, especially when it’s a system that produces powerful results repeatedly over time and a business that can run without you. The value of the activity comes from its ability to help your company grow and scale, with respect to the value being delivered and the profit generated. 

Running errands is worth about $10 an hour. But solving a problem for a prospective or existing customer is worth about $100 an hour. It can be worth up to $10,000 an hour when it is a top client within the sweet spot of your business. Determine what caused the problem for that client and create a repeatable solution that you now sell to more clients like your top client.  

As entrepreneurs, we deceive ourselves about the value of our time with thoughts such as: 

► “I can do this. It won’t take me long.” (Just because you can do something does not mean you should do it.) 

► “It will cost me more to pay someone to do it. I’ll do it myself to save money.”

► “I’ll just get these little things out of the way, then I’ll tackle that big project.”

► “It takes too much time to delegate. It’s faster if I just do it myself.”

When you know that your focus on higher value activities in the business generates $10,000-an-hour worth of value, it becomes harder to justify doing it yourself to save time or money. Yes, you might save $500 or $5,000. Yet, consider this question: What value are you NOT creating in the business by spending your time on these lower-value activities? The next time you find yourself thinking, “I can’t afford to hire…,” consider that it may actually be that you can’t afford NOT to hire when it means freeing up your time to grow the business. 

Trade up your time. Start delegating so that you can move closer to working from your own personal sweet spot. When you are working in your zone of strengths, using your unique gifts and talents, you are working from your own personal sweet spot. These are the talents you bring that have a significant impact on how the business runs, how your team functions, and how you show up and serve others. What you’re doing during that time typically is a $10,000-an-Hour Activity.

What $10 and $100-an-hour activities are you going to let go? Go to to download my chart of $10,000-an-Hour Activities and hang it where you will see it often. Entrepreneurs consistently comment on how powerful this reminder is for making better choices for how time is spent on the business. 

Based in Arkansas, Sabrina Starling, Ph.D., is the author of the “How to Hire the Best” series, founder of Tap the Potential LLC and host of the “Profit by Design” podcast. Get more resources and tips at