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Understanding Value to a Company

Understanding Value to a Company

Employers want to see their employees succeed, and would prefer to avoid losing top financial performers. By adding value to your employer, not only are you displaying a strong commitment to your team and the business as a whole, but it also holds you in good stride when it comes to career advancement. Here are five reasons why (and how) you should start adding value to your employer:

1. Be a keen problem solver

Employees who are eager to find creative solutions to business problems add value to their employers. Being able to find a solution to a problem can give businesses a competitive edge, especially if it allows employees to focus on other issues. An example of this might be finding a solution to meet a project deadline earlier than expected, allowing you and your team to turn your attention elsewhere.

2. Show initiative

Being able to pick up tasks as required or without being asked is a trait that many employers value. Showing initiative and helping team members during busy periods of business will not only benefit your employer but will put you in good standing with your team. If you’re aware that one of your colleagues is struggling to get through their workload, offering to help will be well perceived by your colleagues and show your employer you don’t only have your own interests in mind.

3. Continually looking for improvements

Time is money. If you are able to develop ways of improving productivity and increasing efficiencies, you are adding value by saving your employers’ valuable resources. This could come from streamlining a process within the business, or finding a solution for business partnering with internal teams on budgeting and forecasting.

4. Keep your technical skills up to date

Employers are seeking skilled professionals with current skills when they are looking to hire for a new position, but they also prefer candidates who keep up to date with relevant regulation and industry changes whilst they are in the role. Stay abreast of new accounting regulations by attending courses and webinars to keep your skills current. CIMA offers training and courses that can help further your qualifications and develop your technical skillset.

5. Improve your communication skills

The role of accounting and finance has evolved and it now plays a wider role in business. Employers expect that finance professionals are able to confidently communicate with other parts of the business. Improving communication skills allows professionals to interact more effectively within the business when presenting results or innovative solutions. Professionals who are able to communicate findings and explain their impact in a way that the rest of the business will understand is valuable to employers. Strategies for improving your communication skills include public speaking courses, volunteering to draft memos or leading meetings.

Successful professionals are constantly looking for ways they can develop in their careers and are continually improving their skill sets. The best way for finance professionals to improve their skillsets as a whole is to concentrate on one goal or skill at a time.

It never hurts to assess whether you are living up to your employer’s expectations and if you can increase your productivity. Why? When it comes to remuneration and career advancement, the best way to achieve either is by displaying how you have gone above and beyond what is asked of you. Being able to explain how you have added value to a company, with examples, will stand you in good stead when it comes to negotiating a pay rise or career development.

How to Add Value to Your Company & Contribute to Your Team

Everyone wants to get a raise or a promotion, but rare are those employees who ask, "What can I bring to the company?" What they don't know is, knowing how to add value to your company is the first step to getting a raise or promotion.

Companies succeed in part because they hire, train, and retain talented employees that add value to the organization and the people they serve.

Even if your job description looks like a mere to-do list, those tasks are there to achieve a specific outcome. How you execute these tasks affect your employer’s return-on-investment (ROI) on hiring you.

Employees who know how to add value to their job tend to command higher salaries, more exciting projects, and better job opportunities. Companies value talent like this so much that they'll do everything possible to keep that person, even in the event of a recession, layoff, or merger.

In this tutorial, we'll explore the concept of adding value to a company. I'll identify seven different ways you can add value to your company. Plus, I'll provide some job-specific examples of adding value to a company with real-life advice.

Debunking the Myth About Adding Value to a Company

I worked as a part-time Math and Science Tutor for high school students back in college. Since I could only tutor an hour or two on school days, I did extra hours on weekends and summers to earn more.

That was my first understanding of what it took to earn more in the corporate world: more hours, more money.

I applied the same concept when I started working in customer service. But then I wondered, what did it take to go from entry-level customer service associate to trainer, team supervisor, or operations manager? Some of my teammates had been at the same position for years so clearly, the same approach won’t work if I wanted to level-up.

Many employees go about their professional lives equating the years they’ve worked to the value they give. The corporate world doesn’t work like that.

For example, an office manager could spend two years doing a good job ordering office supplies so inventory doesn’t run out. Or that same manager could find ways to help his employer by negotiating discounts with vendors, buying in bulk to save more, or creating a sharing program between teams so supplies don’t stack up in one area, while another one is always lacking.

Such strategies may not be in the manager’s job description. You need to be proactive and creative to come up with these ideas, too. But going that extra mile saves the employer thousands of dollars in expenses annually. That’s how to bring added value to a company.

Now you might say doing similar stuff oversteps your boundaries. It may or may not, depending on your organization’s culture. If you get good results though, no one will complain.

Meeting Expectations, the Prerequisite to Adding Value to a Company

The first question you might ask is, “What can I bring to the company?” In reality, there’s a different question you should ask first:

Are you meeting the minimum expectations or requirements for your position?

Gallup poll revealed that almost 50% of employees don’t know what their managers expect of them. Also, some companies have limited or no official job descriptions at all. Then there are roles where most of the items on your job description are outdated, while the tasks you’re responsible for aren’t even on the list. It can be confusing to figure this out on your own.

If you’re not 100% sure what’s expected of you, you should talk to your manager first before trying to add more to your plate. Ask your boss to enumerate the specific tasks you need to complete regularly and your ad-hoc duties, and how all these tasks impact the company.

If your manager is just as confused or clueless about your role, then it’s even more important that you talk things through. Together, you can define the core objectives and the resulting tasks related to your job, as well as the performance metrics you need to hit so you can objectively say that you met or exceeded expectations.

7 Different Ways Employees Can Add Value to Their Organization

It's not difficult to add value to your company if you know what to do. Here are seven specific actions you can take no matter what your current job is:

1. Good Customer Service

Customers are creatures of habit. They buy the same shampoo, eat the same food, and use the same products or services they love—until another business steps in and offers them something better.

Good customer service then isn’t just about serving the customer’s needs. You should make sure customers are so awed by the quality of service you provide that they wouldn’t think of checking another brand.

2. Bring In More Money

Adding a few thousand or an extra zero to your employer’s bottom line is one of the biggest and most obvious ways of adding value to a company.

This is easy for people in sales and marketing jobs, but what if you’re in IT support, admin, training, or customer service roles? What can you contribute to the team?

First, determine your impact on the bottom line by dividing the company’s revenue with the total number of employees. To increase your average contribution, employees in non-sales roles can:

  • Customer service - upsell products to existing customers
  • Training - train customer service in improving customer experience, and frontline retail staff in new sales techniques
  • Admin roles - make sure everyone has the paperwork, product samples, and other marketing paraphernalia they need to impress potential customers

3. Improve the Efficiency of a Protocol or Procedure

Just because something is working, doesn’t mean it can’t be improved. This applies to almost every routine, tedious, and repetitive task you do.

Examples:

  • Monthly reports
  • Client presentations
  • Minutes of the meeting
  • Price quotations
  • Contracts
  • Invoicing and billing
  • Inventory management

Anything that can be streamlined into a series of definite tasks can be automated. Even manual tasks can be streamlined if you examine the process carefully, and eliminate unnecessary steps.

Be careful not to automate or cut corners in the wrong places. You don’t want to take shortcuts that could lead to more problems in the future.

4. Save Resources

As in the office administrator example described above, helping your employer save money makes you a valuable employee.

It’s not just about money though. Completing your work on time, so you don’t have to work after hours counts as savings too.

5. Get Recognized as an “Expert” in a Specific Task

Have you noticed how companies usually have an “Excel guy,” “IT guy” or “Facebook Ads Whiz?” Sometimes their expertise isn’t their main job, but they’re the go-to people when someone needs help in the task they’re known for.

Being an expert in a task can increase your contribution to the company, more so if you help others with their work. If you help others, then they’ll spread the word about you and your contribution will no longer be limited to your own work but extend to the wide array of people you assist.

For instance, as the company’s resident copywriter, your wordsmithing skills can help the HR department write better job advertisements or the admin team to write clearer and engaging company memos. Helping employees from other departments also build your network, so you can count on them when you’re the one who needs help in the future.

Examples of skills you can learn that can be helpful in different roles:

  • Excel can help with anything from building a better invoicing system or a customized product inventory
  • Photoshop can help your employer design better brochures and marketing paraphernalia
  • Website design is great for people who work in small companies that don’t have enough funds to outsource this task, or hire an in-house developer full time. You don’t need to learn programming to create a beautiful site. Discover great WordPress themes on Envato Elements or GraphicRiver.
  • Social media, don’t let your employer get behind on social media. Create online accounts for them if they don’t have one, or offer to update their social media strategy if they’re not getting traction.

Need help with any of the skills listed above? Check out these tutorials:

 

25 Ways to Create Value at Work—According to Bosses

The world looks different now from how we shop to what we do on the weekends.
Unemployment has skyrocketed, we use the word furlough more frequently, and working from home looks a lot less glamorous than many previously thought. While COVID-19 has shifted us into working in a new reality, what about the people whose work, thus far, has been relatively unaffected?
People are working from home and getting the job done, but are still left wondering in these uncertain times, how do I keep my job? How can I add value at work to show my boss I’m an asset? What do employers like to see, so I can do my best to continue working now and in the years to come?
We spoke with nine bosses and asked them about valuation creation at work, what it looks like to them, and how you can create value today. Here’s what they had to say.

What Does Creating Value at Work Look Like to You?

Being a Team Player

“Creating value is more than being good at your job. In my experience, you also need to be a team player, and by that, I mean you need to uphold the purpose and values of your organization through your work and through your interactions with colleagues. You also need to be able to stretch beyond your comfort zone. Teams sometimes must adjust their vision and strategy to align more closely with overall organizational goals. When this happens, you may be asked to take on different projects, and it’s important that you are able and willing to do so.” - Stephanie, Vice President, Corporate Communications in the Medical Devices Industry

Trusting Your Employer

“Creating value looks like an outward expression of the belief and trust you have in the company's environment and future. Behaving like you truly care and are engaged with your position brings value to your job and to the company.” - Jennifer, Office Manager in the Dental Industry

Communication

“During COVID-19, value creation has been centered around one's ability to communicate and remain calm and collaborative. Within the Food and Beverage industry, supply chains are being stressed, and hard decisions are having to be made (allocation and shorting of customers, delays, transit issues). How employees respond to this pressure and communicate internally and externally sets them apart and makes them pivotal to the stability of the organization.” - Angela, Key Account Manager in the Food Ingredient Industry

Contributing in a Meaningful Way

“It means contributing in a meaningful way that accelerates or sustains company growth. So, not just doing your job, but doing the job that matters!” - Solu, Director, Business Operations in the Technology Industry and Executive Coach

Being Flexible

“As a hiring manager, I’ve had the chance to work with strong players, but the ones that stand out are the ones that can work with a bit of ambiguity and not have all the answers and communications completely spelled out. Mainly because everything that is happening now is new and can change in an instant. Being able to just ask the questions collectively helps us discuss what may be around the corner. “ - Ginny, Director of Recruiting in the Technology Industry

Considering Internal and External Stakeholders

“I think of value creation in two parts for both internal and external stakeholders. Value is created for our customers by providing solutions to their problems and top-notch service. We put the people back in recruiting and make it a human experience. Internal value creation comes from team collaboration, training, demonstrating our core values, and participating in process improvement initiatives.” - Suzanne, Partner in the Recruiting Industry

Thinking Critically

“Being able to critically think and not just be a task rabbit. If I give a member of my team a project to complete, I want and need them to look at it from every angle. They need to be able to efficiently execute the task and hopefully do so without a tremendous amount of guidance and hand-holding. They have to be able to critically think of what is being asked of them and have the confidence and autonomy to complete the task. Now more than ever, that is valuable.” - Erin, Events Director in the National Education Nonprofit Industry

Finding and Keeping Business

“Right now, creating value is all about seeking new business and keeping existing business. Many of our marketing programs were canceled or postponed for Q2 and Q3. In order to keep the business afloat through 2020 and beyond, we need to make up some of that work in Q3 and Q4.” - Brielle, Digital Marketing Manager in the Marketing and Advertising Industry

How Can Employees Create Value at Work?

Be Positive

“By coming to work engaged and ready to support the team or the systems, they are bringing vibrance and energy that can be felt by customers and their peers. That attitude and positivity is a value that can't be taught, but when present is one of the most powerful things an employee and effectively a company can possess.” - Jennifer, Office Manager in the Dental Industry

Be Electable

“An employee can stand out by being electable. To be electable means not only mastering your job, but always raising your hand to help others and take on additional tasks. Employees stand out when coworkers can call on them to help. It's never fun to have a teammate that only wants to do their job and go home. After all, we are in it together! However, be mindful to not wear yourself too thin and remember when it's ok to say your plate is full.” - Suzanne, Partner in the Recruiting Industry

Be Customer-Oriented

“Finding creative ways to meet customers’ demands or being able to defend and explain the reason expectations can't be met.” - Angela, Key Account Manager in the Food Ingredient Industry

Be Proactive

“Find something that needs fixing or improving and present ideas on how to do so to your manager.” - Anonymous

Be Vocal

“I see a lot of value in employees who say something when they see an unmet need within the team or the organization. You should have the courage to speak up, but before you do, you should give some thought to how that need could be met. Company leaders do not have all the answers—the views of people deep in your teams are valuable.” - Stephanie, Vice President, Corporate Communications in the Medical Devices Industry

Be Focused

“Prioritize and communicate what matters and let go of what doesn't. If you are doing the same thing over and over again, that's an opportunity to take a closer look and ask, what value does this bring?” - Solu, Director, Business Operations in the Technology Industry and Executive Coach

Be Forward Thinking

“Look at the week ahead and the projects that need to be completed and offer to take them on. Is there something they know I need to get done but maybe they can take off my plate to further support the team or be prepared for the meeting with the CEO, offer to step up. Also, value can be created in seeking out their own professional development. As a large scale conference events director, our entire team is having to pivot and learn how to move a week-long professional development conference to a virtual experience, so I need my team researching, seeking out knowledge that can help them do their job better. For me, that is huge.”  - Erin, Events Director in the National Education Nonprofit Industry

Be Creative

“This crisis is calling for creativity. We all need to think about our job and businesses differently. The more new ideas we can bring to the table, the better enabled we will be to save the economy.” - Brielle, Digital Marketing Manager in the Marketing and Advertising Industry

Fifteen Ways to Show Your Value at Work

 

Jan 24, 2019

 

By Blaine Loomer

The unemployment rate is higher than in the past and for many companies, business isn’t exactly booming. The best way to keep your job is to show your employer that you are so valuable that they simply can't live without you.

Here are 15 sure-fire ways to increase your value to the organization:

  1. Be part of the bottom line. If you want to be valuable to your company, then you need to help it make money. The company measures its ROI on you, so you should measure the ROI on yourself as well. Focus on the activities that use your time, skills, and resources most effectively to connect back to the bottom line.
  2. Remember that time is money. Your most valuable commodity is your time; spend it wisely. Don't invest eight hours in putting together a presentation when you can deliver the same results with less prep time. Management will value the content of your message, not a bunch of fluff and pretty artwork.
  3. Sing your own praises (but not too loudly). Your work generally won’t speak for itself. You must speak for yourself. Make sure that managers understand the effort you put into your job and the results you produce. A bit of modest bragging will not only help you come promotion time, but it will also help discredit any attacks levied against you. Provide the right amount of information about yourself, but don't beat your accomplishments to death. Too many trips to the boss's office may work against you.
  4. Recognize “deal or no deal” situations. Most people don't negotiate well because they really want what the other person has and they don't want to risk losing it. But whether it's a big contract, a job, a promotion, or a new car, you have to be willing to walk away. When you are willing to do so, you will be pleasantly surprised at how much better your negotiations turn out. Suddenly, what you offer carries value, and the tables often turn.
  5. Get smart. Too many people don't understand the basic operation of their companies. Familiarize yourself with the organizational chart and reporting structures. Study and understand the financials. You never know where your life may lead. Learn as much as you can along the way, even though what you're learning may not seem relevant at the time.
  6. Be a confident innovator. When you pitch your ideas to management, be prepared to defend your views and also to receive criticism. Management will challenge you simply to test your level of enthusiasm for the idea and its viability. There are a lot of variables to consider, and management wants to know you've thought about them. If you support your ideas with solid research and show some passion, management will be more likely to embrace your concept. Continue to build on your work value with our seminar class on developing "set up" skills.
  7. Keep an eye on your e-trail. Save all important e-mail and electronic data. If you have ever received an e-mail from someone asking you to confirm something, that person is likely covering himself. This is not a bad thing, and in many cases can clear up any confusion later. Disk space is cheap compared to the trouble it may save you.
  8. Don't be afraid to say no (assuming that you're doing such a great job your company can't afford to get rid of you). If you don't set limits, you will find yourself on a perpetual treadmill.
  9. Know which rung on the ladder is right for you. Do you want to be responsible for the success or failure of your company? If so, move up the ladder. Do you want to go home at five every day and forget about work until the next morning? Then moving up the ladder is not for you. The important thing is that you do your job to the best of your ability and that you are happy doing it.
  10. Shut up and listen. If you don't know what you don't know, then seek out some experienced advice. A mentor can warn you about things you may never have considered and keep you from being blindsided by unforeseen events or costs. As difficult as it may be, admit to yourself that you don't know everything.
  11. Learn the difference between e-communication and real communication. Communicating with people is an opportunity not only to transfer information but also to build relationships with them. In an age of electronic communication, our conversations are becoming increasingly impersonal. Effective employees must be able to interact with people and solve problems. If you can't interact with people directly, you have no value.
  12. Add sales to your skill set. When it comes to You, Inc., there is only one person on the sales team: you! Despite what your resume says, adding sales to your skill set is a must. Whenever you are trying to pitch a new idea to your company, you'll need a sales pitch that is convincing and sound. Moreover, if you are vying for a promotion or raise, you'll need to be prepared to pitch yourself. Be ready to defend your views and have answers for the tough questions. If someone disagrees with you, be ready to support your ideas with solid research and your own enthusiasm. You’ll soon persuade people to see things your way.
  13. If it isn't broken, don't fix it. The only reason to change something is to make it better. In business, change is often confused with progress. Likewise, employees feel the pressure to constantly make changes to keep up the appearance of productivity and to prove their worth. Put a time limit on your own goals so that you don't chase a bad idea longer than you should. In addition, if the system, idea, or product you currently have in place works well—then let it be, and concentrate your efforts on changing the things that truly need it.
  14. Get a life. It's good to be committed to the company, and corporate accomplishments are rewarding; but when all is said and done, a lifetime goes by quickly. Try not to take your job home with you. I am a firm believer that you get what you give. If you are happy, those around you will be happy as well.
  15. Say “no” to working vacations. When you take your vacation, take your vacation! Don't offer to check e-mail and voicemail while you are away. I have made this mistake and I can tell you if you do it, you might as well have stayed at work. A lot of companies offer rewards and perks like club trips or weekend getaways. Although these are great and can be a lot of fun, they are not vacations. They are still about the company, and you will still be working. You'll just be out of the office.

Finally, if you spend your workdays worrying about losing your job, you are probably headed for trouble. Push those negative thoughts out of your mind and focus on the work you do and how you add value to your company. Demonstrate positivity and a can-do attitude to your team. Work smarter than your competition and you’ll get ahead, every time. Continue to build on your skills to be an integral member and join our on-demand class on the subject.

Part of increasing your value at work also includes motivating yourself to take control of your own career. Click here to learn more about this AMA webinar.

7 Ways To Add Massive Value To Your Business

There are seven secrets to add value in your job and in the world around you.  Any one of these ideas or concepts can be sufficient for you to become financially successful. When you begin to combine these ideas together, you’ll begin to move ahead more rapidly in your financial life than you ever have before.

1. The Faster The Better

The first way to increase value is simply to increase the speed you deliver the kind of value people are willing to pay for.

Successful people know everybody is impatient.  A person who didn’t realize that they wanted your product or service until today, now wants it yesterday. People perceive a direct correlation between speed and the value of your offering.

A person who can do it for you fast is considered to be a better and competent person offering a higher level of quality than a person who does it slowly, or whenever they get around to it.

2. Offer Better Quality

The second key to creating wealth is by offering better quality than your competitors at the same price.

And remember, quality is whatever the customer says it is.  Total quality management can best be defined as: “Finding out what your customer wants and giving it to him or her faster than your competitors.”

Quality does not just mean greater durability or excellence in design.  Quality refers, first of all, to utility, to the use that the customer needs to put the product or service.  It is the customer’s specific need, or the benefit that the customer seeks, that defines quality in his or her mind.

3. Add Value

The third way that you can become wealthy is by looking for ways to add value to everything you do.

Remember, if everyone is offering the same thing, these factors of the product or service become the basic minimum, or the expected norm in the market.

If you want to stand out as a person or as a producer, you have to “plus” whatever you are doing so that your customer perceives you and your offering as being superior to that of your competitors.

You can add value to a product or service by improving the packaging or the design.  You can increase its value by simplifying its method of use.

Apple transformed the entire world of computers by making them easy to use for the unsophisticated person.

Simplicity became an enormous source of added value for Apple, and for countless other companies that have followed the same route.

4. Increase Convenience

The fourth way of increasing wealth is by increasing the convenience of purchasing and using your product or service.

Fast food stores by the thousands are a simple example of how much more people are willing to pay for convenience than they are if they have to drive across town to a major shopping center or a major grocery store.

5. Improve Customer Service

A fifth way of creating value and increasing wealth is by improving customer service.  People are predominantly emotional.

They are greatly impacted by the warmth, friendliness, cheerfulness and helpfulness of customer service representatives.  Many companies are using customer service as a primary source of competitive advantage in a fast changing marketplace.

6. Changing Lifestyles

The sixth key to creating wealth is changing life styles, and the impact they are having on customer purchasing patterns and behaviors throughout the country.

There is a national trend toward cocooning, or staying at home more and to making the home environment more enjoyable.  People’s tastes are very different from the tastes of people a generation ago.

More people want to travel and take vacations, thereby creating a boom in the travel, leisure, resort and cruise industries.

Changing lifestyles and demographics can create opportunities that will enable you to offer a product or service to a clearly identifiable market that can make you wealthy in a short period of time.

7. Offer Planned Discounts

The seventh key to creating to wealth is just planned discounting.  This involves finding ways to sell higher and higher volumes of products and services to more and more people at lower and lower prices.

You’ve heard it said that, “If you want to dine with the classes, you have to sell to the masses.”

How could you offer a product or service of good value at an even lower price?  How could you squeeze out the costs of getting that product or service to the customer and pass the savings onto him or her?

When you begin thinking of increasing the speed at which you deliver your product or service, improving the quality, add value at every stage of production, increasing the convenience for your customers, giving better customer service, catering to changing lifestyles and trends and finding ways to reduce the actual cost, you will be astonished at the incredible number of ideas and possibilities that exist around you.

And remember, one idea of insight for benefiting customers in a way that no one is currently offering can be the springboard that launches you into a life of financial success and achievement.

 

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