I’ve written about value multipliers previously, in “Game as a Value Multiplier“, where I define a multiplier as:
“A multiplier is a very simple concept, it’s an added variable that either serves to increase or decrease a given value. “
One of the things I think I neglected to adequately cover in that essay is the fact that a multiplier can be both positive and negative, and how it is regarded may be context dependent.
It’s quite common to make the distinction between internal factors in a company that contribute to its performance, and external factors that affect its performance. The idea of “core competencies” is perhaps the clearest formulation of how a company’s unique configuration of competencies, qualities and traits can become a source of competitive advantage. Examples would be 3M’s focus on innovation and new products, WalMart’s focus on high volume logistics, or Apples focus on high quality design work.
When applying the core competencies principle to a person the internal multipliers would be those things that alter the behavior of a given variable or set of variables based on a person’s internal characteristics. Men who write “How to vet a wife” articles often draw on such variables as a woman’s history of self control, loyalty or self-discipline, not due to these factors in and of themselves, but because the combination of these variables build a barrier towards external negative multipliers.
A woman who has a combination of love for family, traditional values and self-discipline as a core competency is according to these men a better prospect for marriage because they act as barriers for promiscuity, divorce and impulsive behavior, all of which are encouraged externally in our present social order.
External multipliers are those a person has little control over and which exist outside of that person. For instance, most are familiar with the example of going out with a wing who is shorter than you, so that you look taller by comparison. Likewise a woman may be a 10 in a small town, but a 6 in Los Angeles or Miami where beautiful women tend to congregate.
In my day job I’ve frequently utilized examples such as industry legal issues, or multi-national legal issues as an example of external negative multipliers, as these have a negative effect on the revenues of each company within an industry, yet are unrelated to the aspects of performance that a company has control over. Continue reading