Finance Guide: How to Pay Yourself as a Business Owner


Knowing how to pay yourself is an important part of running any business. You’re as much a person as your employees, and so you deserve to be paid for all of your hard work. However, business leaders can sometimes pay themselves unfair wages, which can lead to serious trouble for the company.

Learning how to objectively measure your own value to the company is a skill that only the best leaders have. It’s also one of the most important ones for any entrepreneur.

To learn how more about how to pay yourself and how to make sure you are paid a fair amount, keep reading below!

Honesty Is Important to Figure Out How to Pay Yourself

The first step when figuring out how much to pay yourself as a business owner is to be honest. You should try to be as objective as possible when measuring your contributions to the company. Consider how much your employees make and how much they’re paid when deciding on your own paycheck.

If you spend hours per day in the office, slog through weekends on a computer, and always answer emails within minutes — you should pay yourself more. However, don’t ever think that you’re inherently worth more just because you own the business.

Paying yourself more than your employees without a justifiable reason will only ever jeopardize your company. Employees may end up resenting you, and your budget may shrink over time. So, be honest and try to be as objective as possible when writing your own paycheck.

Always Pay Yourself for What You’ve Done

In the same way that you should never pay yourself for more than you’re worth, you should always reward yourself for what you’ve done. Business leaders are people, too. They need money to put food on their tables and to support their families.

As leaders, they can sometimes take on more work than employees.

Make sure that you get a paycheck at the end of the workweek, just like the rest of your employees. Otherwise, you may grow to resent the very company that you started to build. Without adequate pay, you may not give it adequate work, and the company may lag behind the competition.

Document Everything to Explain Your Pay

No matter the size of your paycheck, you should always make check stubs to track how much you’re paid. By making paycheck stubs, you can document your own pay rate and the reasons you earn as much as you do. It’s a document trail that justifies your wage and proves that you’re financially sound.

If overseeing agencies, or even the IRS, ask to see your finances, you’ll have paycheck stubs to show them. It’ll help keep you out of trouble, and making them will help you keep track of your own wage.

Paying Yourself Is an Important Step of Running a Business

Sometimes, business leaders get so committed to their companies that they forget how to pay themselves. If you’re ever wondering how to pay yourself, it may be time to take a step back and realize work is just work. It’s just about making money; there shouldn’t be anything else involved with it.

If work gets to be about more than just work, you may be in trouble. Your company may not have the leader it needs. To learn how to lead your company more effectively, just keep reading our website here!