With an increasing demand for jobs and limited resources, being good at your job isn’t good enough. It takes more than following the job description and finishing tasks. In fact, it’s much more complicated than this if you want to move up the ladder. In order to succeed in your career, you must add value to the company. Continuous learning and outperforming yourself quarter after quarter is a good place to start. Here are some tips on how to succeed at your job:
Digging deeper means going beyond your job description. Start off by asking yourself the series of two – part questions. The first question of each pair pertains the superficial expectations of your traditional job description. The second part allows you to think deeper and helps you translate what you need to do to add value.
What single statement best describes your role?
What single statement reveals your vital purpose to your team/organization?
What are the common obstacles that prevent your best work?
What are the unexpected challenges of staying on purpose and delivering your value?
A technology firm is a good example of how this approach works. On paper, the job is to ensure that the company’s technology needs are met, so each business unit operates to its full potential. But, to add value and go beyond the job description, the employee is responsible for anticipating the evolving needs of the business units and ensuring the readiness to identify and deploy feasible technology solutions that meet them.
These questions require you to think critically and outside the box. However, after answering these two part questions, you will have an idea of what you do, and what you need to do to add value.
The willingness and ability to learn
One way to be valuable to the organization is to develop your skills further. If you have the opportunity to take part in a workshop or a seminar, or if the organization offers additional training programs, take the initiative to participate in these events. At the very least, you gain new information, and at the very most, you pick up a new skill or interest. Developing those interests on a regular basis and allowing yourself to continuously grow keeps your mind engaged and gives you something to accomplish outside of your daily tasks.
Align with common goals
Once you fully grasp the concept of going above and beyond, you must confirm whether or not there is a “mutual agenda” – the powerful space where your own goals and desired contributions intersect with the organization’s needs. The mutual agenda ensures your work is imperative and value- driven. Ask your boss or other colleagues on the changing market conditions, shifting stakeholder priorities, and the internal company challenges. If you discover that your job does not align with the vision and priorities of the organization, then you need to figure why and how your role may need to evolve.
Adding value requires a lot more than coming to work and finishing your tasks every day. Ask yourself, what value you want to bring into the workplace and how that can be achieved. In addition, there’s a huge difference between talking and doing. Make sure you walk the talk, not talk the talk. Read more on succeeding at your job within-the-job.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not of The HR Gazette or its team members.