Becoming a person of value

October 20, 2018


LAST week, we learned how to add value to yourself and add value to your co-workers. Here are two more ways how to be a person of value.

Add value to your processes. One can be very busy but, in reality, is unproductive. A clerk cranks out data which no one bothers to analyze. An operator runs a machine that keeps spitting defective products. A salesperson keeps visiting prospects without closing a sale.

Adding value to a process means it becomes more profitable, consumes less resources, takes shorter time and so on. Sometimes the value is to eliminate the process altogether if it is deemed unnecessary or replaceable by automation, thereby shifting attention to more beneficial activities.

Therefore, cultivate a problem-solution mindset on the job. Common employees dump problems on their boss’s lap and expect the boss to “handle” them. But extraordinary employees deliver solutions. Rather than merely present facts and figures that trumpet the problem, try to propose action plans to resolve it.

Add value to your employer. I once saw a poster that said, “Don’t come to me asking for more money. Help me make more money so there will be more money for you.” If you want to increase your wealth, first increase your employer’s wealth.

We should not think that because we are only paid so-and-so, we will limit our output. Let us move beyond our job descriptions and create new value for the company. Can you bring in more customers? Help lower costs? Organize files or improve systems? Enhance production efficiency or quality? Go the extra mile for customers?

Always be open to opportunities that will benefit your company. One time, I was manning our booth in a trade show when a Singaporean approached me and asked if our company would be interested in carrying his product line, plastic pallets. Our company was into a different line of plastics, but I knew my boss is always on the lookout for new business partners. So instead of turning him away, I arranged for a meeting between him and my boss, the fruit of which was a distributorship agreement where we earn a fee for every pallet we sell.

I know it sounds harsh, but you are being paid to make your employer richer. After all, nobody goes into business and hire people to lose money. However, I will generate more opportunities for myself if I help my employer attain its financial goals. These opportunities can be in the form of bonuses or promotions.

Even if you are working for a tight-fisted employer and feel that it is high time to work for someone else -- hopefully, someone more generous -- you will be armed with impressive accomplishments in your resume.

Conclusion: My darling wife wants me to eat a healthy diet. But bless her, she allows me an occasional buffet. So, we shop around which restaurant gives “more value for money.” In the same way, give your employer more value for the money he is paying you. Increase your inherent worth which you can keep parlaying into more monetary worth. It is a game which everyone wins.

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