Titles vs. Salaries: Get Over Yourself

As children we were told a reward for being the quietest would be the line leader, the board eraser or the Student of the Month.

We are praised as the Birthday Boy/Girl, a graduate, a Varsity team player or the President of a club.

We have always been given titles because it’s taught us authority, role responsibility and something to strive for (or in some cases avoid).

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As an adult, what are your first thoughts when you hear CEO vs. Founder?

Owner vs. Manager?

Climate Change vs. Global Warming?


You get the idea. The importance or naming titles and re-branding an idea have not been lost on leaders in this world trying to create some form of movement or change.

Check out these REAL ridiculous titles:

  • Beverage Dissemination Officer – Bartender.
  • Chick Sexer – Someone who determines the sex of chickens.
  • Digital Overlord – Website Manager.
  • Retail Jedi – Shop Assistant.
  • Wizard of Light Bulb Moments – Marketing Director.

Some add humor while some add complexity. But they could deter from the purpose of the job, the respect it requires and a lack of clarity. In some cases, like human resources, the broad titles like ‘Happiness Manager’ seem childish and cheesy to some but playful in a challenging role to others.

A title means as much as you give to it.


Someone who starts a business may choose to call themselves Owner, Founder or CEO.

In context, an Owner would ‘own’ a business such as a candy shop or bed and breakfast.

A Founder is especially important to know if your bragging rights are needed. Let’s say you’re being interviewed on a podcast and people want to know they’re hearing from the founder of the company vs. who is running things these days.

The title of CEO can come off as a bit pompous or stiff-sounding so you usually won’t see this with mom-and-pop shops. Consider your brand and your audience.


I’ve grown to enjoy titles because they clear up what responsibilities fall under each person’s position in the company. Considering everyone provides the ‘team effort’ and is willing to do what it takes, a title gives an employee a sense of identity and respects your time with duties that will make a difference instead of being stuffed with busy work.


With titles, comes salaries. If you’re getting promoted from Sales Associate to Manager you would expect your paycheck to reflect that right? More than likely, your answer should be YES! A promotion is a form of recognition for your dedication and hard work while the pay raise is the physical, monetary reward you can take home to improve some area of your life.


It’s been argued, and I’m sure will be argued again, that people get so caught up in the money or what title they have that they don’t get any work done or lose sight of what they should be doing. I get it.

I believe that’s why we fail.

The stay-at-home mom starts believing and becoming that title she’s been given. She believes that’s all there is to her.

The laid-off businessman is given the title of unemployed, fired or jobless and believes that consumes his worth and intelligence.

You get the idea.


It’s difficult for us to focus on the task at hand when we’re consistently looking for the next promotion, raise or next step. Classic glass is greener scenario.

We want to feel a sense of pride and purpose. What will we answer when people ask who we are or what we do? Would you take a pay cut to receive a better title? Or would you be fine with a low outward perception (and all that came with it) yet more money in the bank? Do you want respect or more savings?

Your title is a form of instant branding and recognition. It can portray your value in the workplace and the quality of work you do; no matter how good or how bad.

If you’re hiring someone, put yourself in their shoes, and check out job boards right now. How do people sugarcoat 100 percent commission jobs? Do you want to be an Assistant or a Specialist? The titles you give, or accept, in a workplace should reflect the responsibility of the job and the expertise required.

Consider naming your products, services and plan levels with the same reverence as job titles. The benefits of revamping your title and naming in your business will not only reflect the quality of work being done and employees who work for you but they could also increase productivity, happiness and clarity.


If you’re curious about what your current naming or titles say about your business, we’re more than happy to do a FREE review.



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