Friday, October 19, 2012

5 Ways to Maximize your Contribution to your Company

I've focused much on personal finance theory and practical knowledge in this blog.  I figured it was time for a little change of pace, and so today I want to focus a little on improving your contribution to your current employer.  This all assumes that you in fact want to perform better work for your employer in the hopes of advancing through the ranks.  I've put together a little list of 5 ways in which I avoided obsolescence in my workplace and differentiated myself from my fellow workers.

Alright, on to the top 5 ways to increase your contribution to your employer:

1.) Learn as much as you can.

This first one sounds simple enough, but I cannot tell you how many times I've seen people become complacent in their current jobs.  They become used to a particular way of doing things, and so go through the motions each and every day.  To a manager, these people get the job done, but don't offer anything new.  Underlying these assumptions is an overall fear of change.  Don't live in fear!  Instead, try to learn something new about your job each day, even if it includes something as simple as a new way to do something in a company used software.  Another way this concept can be applied is if there is a new process or program to be learned at work.  Become the first person to know how to apply these new tools.  Not only will you be able to help all your other fellow workers, but people around the office will notice, and you will start to be labeled as a helpful person.

2.) Be eager to be assigned new projects.

I'm always amazed when I see people at work loath to receive a new assignment.  Yes it's work, but this is the type of stuff you are getting paid for.  If you are eager and rather happy to receive assignments, generally they will be less painful to complete, and your manager will appreciate your willingness.  Even if you are not the best technical worker, just being appreciative or eager can separate yourself from the pack.

3.) Be accurate.

This is another one of those topics that is easier said than done.  When completing a report or performing a task, make sure to review your work.  In fact, do it 3 or 4 times.  If you can deliver your work in a timely, and most importantly, accurate capacity, you will be seen as an incredibly valuable employee.

4.) Ask questions.

When I first got out of college and started out in the working world, I would attend meetings, listen to the conversation, not know what was going on, and be too chicken to ask questions for fear of looking stupid.  Don't feel this way.  This was a big mistake in my career.  Often times, I would go for a significant time frame without knowing some critical piece of information, and be even more embarrassed to ask the question in the future when I should have known the answer by that time.  Ask the question.  Often times, someone else is thinking the exact same thing.

5.) Offer your services.

Help your co-workers, other departments, and your boss even if they are not asking for it.  One of the best pieces of advice I received on getting ahead in the world is to figure out what your boss needs and give/do it.  The motivation and enthusiasm you project can be read by all.  If you are helpful and can perceive future work, you be that much more beneficial to your company.

In closing, I ask the question as to whether all this information will pay off in the future.  You don't have to be the smartest person on your floor to be promoted or receive raises at work.  If you work hard, show that your reliable, and a team player, than you will be one of the best employees in your department...I guarantee it!

Wonderful Moment of the Day: Ate like a half a gallon of ice cream.  Don't really know if this was wonderful or a serious mistake...time will tell.

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