Last week Joanne and I came through the Denver airport with an hour layover.  In walking toward our gate I saw the shoeshine guys right in the middle of the big corridor.  They seemed to be having a great deal of fun and many of the people waiting in line appeared to be regulars.

I had on a pair of Cole Haan shoes that look like a boot and have a very rough texture.  The young guy I spoke to assured me they could make them look great and I took my seat.  I had not seen any signs about the pricing but assumed I had simply overlooked them.  But while I was sitting in the seat I observed a lot of money being handed to these three guys in a very informal way.

Yes, he did an amazing job on my shoes.  When I stood up I asked how much I owed him and he replied, “Whatever you’d like, sir.”   No prices, no suggested fees, just whatever I’d like.

Would you be willing to accept that in pay at the end of the day?  Or to provide your service for a customer and simply say “Whatever you’d like?”

How do you think that steps up their level of service — their attempts to be interested in you as a real person rather than just one more customer?  What do you think they’re income is compared to other shoe-shine shops?  I know I paid double what a normal shine costs just because of the great service and innovative approach.  With most people not wanting to appear cheap or taking advantage I suspect that their model dramatically increases their income.

We’ve had people tell us they would have paid ten times as much for the coaching they received or twice as much for a live event they attended here at the Sanctuary.  But I’ve never been man enough to just say, “Whatever you’d like.”

Could you double your income or would it drop to chicken feed if you made that your policy?  If it would be less are people feeling cheated now?

 Dan Miller is today's leading authority and personality on careers and 'Work You LoveTM'. As bestselling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love, and now No More Mondays, Dan reaches over a million people every month ia his newsletter, podcast, and blog with the best trends and opportunities in the workplace and small business. For more information, visit http://www.48days.com.