03 Mar 5 Sure-Fire Ways to Demonstrate Your Value to Your Employer
Understanding how to demonstrate your value to your employer is essential for developing your career, whether you are negotiating a pay rise or asking for a promotion. Even more significantly, at a time when businesses are being forced to consider redundancies, restructures and cutbacks, being able to show that you are indispensable to your organisation has the potential to improve your job security. However, research shows that one in five employees feel undervalued at work, and 60% of employees feel that line managers lack the willingness or ability to objectively assess and differentiate performance.
So, how do you highlight the impact you make and position yourself as an asset to your company in the eyes of your employer?
1. Create Your Own Scorecard
Many roles come with established metrics that are used to measure performance. For example, a Developer may be expected to close a certain number of issues within a set period. These metrics have their benefits. but when it comes to demonstrating the full value you bring to the table, they are often insufficient. They do not account for things like taking on extra responsibilities, coming up with solutions to ad hoc issues, providing informal training to a peer or taking time to identify the best approach to a task.
Rather than relying solely on formal performance metrics to reflect your contributions, come up with your own scorecard by which to evaluate your impact. They should:
- Be valuable and easy to measure
- Align with the wider goals of the organisation
- Be consistently built upon week-by-week
At the same time, make sure you keep track of your accomplishments. If you improve a process, come up with a solution that saves time or receive positive feedback from a client, record this. Your personal scorecard can also help you set goals and pinpoint new ways to deliver value, such as improving certain technical skills, volunteering to take on extra projects and looking for opportunities to go beyond your current role. Just be sure you are nailing the key deliverables already established for your role before looking for new ways to add value.
2. Quantify Your Results
Once you have a personal scorecard and a list of accomplishments and achievements, think of ways to quantify these successes. Regardless of the role you hold, numbers talk, and can help your employer to visualise precisely how you’ve benefitted the business. Look for concrete, meaningful ways to quantify your contributions at work, such as time savings, cost reductions and process improvements. These will also be indispensable additions to your CV and LinkedIn profile when it comes time to find a new opportunity.
3. Think About the Bigger Picture
It’s important to understand how your work directly impacts the bigger picture of your company. Focus on the activities that connect back to the bottom line – essentially, the ROI of you as an employee.
How do your resources, time and skills directly benefit the organisation’s vision and contribute to its profitability? This may tie in to how you quantify your achievements, or it may be something more difficult to calculate. For example, if you help secure repeat business through excellent service or found a way to get a delayed project back on track, you should take credit for that.
4. Contribute Ideas Confidently
Showing initiative and contributing ideas is a key part of becoming an asset to your organisation. When putting forth your views and suggestions, be enthusiastic, confident and open to receiving constructive criticism. Be sure to do solid research to support the viability of your concepts and demonstrate to management that you have thought through them carefully and can show how they will benefit the business. Don’t worry about the people who try to take credit for ideas – if you’re positive, honest and genuinely looking for ways to benefit the company, your contributions will be noticed.
5. Promote Yourself (Modestly)
Your work won’t always speak for itself – sometimes you need to do that. Make sure your employer understands the effort you put into your job and the results you deliver, take credit for what you’ve achieved and avoid the temptation to minimise your work.
Rather than waiting for a performance review, consider dropping a noteworthy accomplishment into an email and outlining the outcome. Just keep in mind that too much bragging can have a negative effect, so be discreet, keep it modest and always give credit to other team members where it is due.
At the end of the day, if you are good at your job, most of the time this will naturally shine through. However, the only person who will truly promote you is you, and sometimes it is easy to be taken for granted. If you feel you are bringing more to the table than originally agreed, requesting a review or having a discussion with your manager is perfectly acceptable. By quantifying your accomplishments and finding ways to contribute to the bigger picture of the organisation, you can demonstrate your true impact to your employer.