How do I identify the value that I bring to my organisation, and what should I do I do with that knowledge?

AUGUST 5, 2016

There will be times in your working life when you feel like you are in a rut or that you are doing little more than surviving from one day to the next, without any pleasure in your work or sense of being appreciated. It’s important during these times to turn your attention inwards, to understand yourself; what motivates and inspires you, where you make a positive contribution to your workplace.

What are YOUR strengths and weaknesses? You are most likely to succeed in life if you use your talents to their fullest extent. Similarly, you will suffer fewer problems if you know what your weaknesses are, and if you manage these weaknesses so that they do not matter in the work that you do.

A SWOT analysis is a useful technique that helps you to identify your strengths and weaknesses. It also allows you to analyzing the opportunities and threats that flow from them.

The SWOT analysis is especially powerful because it can help you uncover opportunities that you would not otherwise have spotted. And by understanding your weaknesses, you can manage and eliminate threats that might otherwise hurt your ability to perform to your best ability.

Working successfully in an organisation includes understanding the organisation and its people, including employees and customers. Knowing the product line and how it fulfils a need is just as important as ordering more toner for the printer. If you do not understand your company's mission and vision, you will not know how best to support its various functions.

The same goes for people — knowing employees' roles, where they fit into the big picture, and how they operate will help you deal most efficiently and effectively within the organisation.

The more you know about how the company works and what people are doing to build business, fulfil customer requests, meet deadlines, and otherwise perform their duties, the more successful you'll be in creating and sustaining an environment that fosters success.

Another way to uncover your value is to list at least 10 tasks that your organisation relies on you for doing. Now, think about what would happen if you were not there to complete those tasks?

Now that you have an insight into the value that you bring through your strengths and talents and through those things that your business relies on you for, you can apply them in a number of ways:

  • By being an ambassador for your organisation. This requires you to be passionate about your job and to portray your role within the company in a positive light. All employees, regardless of function or title, are key ambassadors for a business’s products and services. Members of sales, marketing, engineering and product development are key representatives of the company. And so are receptionists, administrative assistants and the maintenance staff.
  • By writing your own career script rather than waiting for someone to write it for you. Go the extra mile and work well beyond your job description. Confidently build your skill level and continually look forwards to make yourself more valuable. Focus on your strengths and opportunities.
  • By asking for what you want. The future belongs to people who ask with clarity for what they want. Don’t be part of the majority who sit back hoping that things will improve. Ask in a courteous and polite manner, but persistently ask. This will effectively communicate your ambition, intent and leadership potential to your boss.
  • By developing a positive attitude. Your attitude at work will always determine your level of eventual success. People who are cheerful and optimistic will always be liked more than the moaners and groaners. It is vital in the workplace that you get on with your clients and colleagues. The best team players are those who display a supportive and positive demeanour.

Job satisfaction occurs when you feel you have accomplished something of importance and value. Regularly doing what is outlined above will highlight where you add value and allow you to demonstrate this in a way that may positively impact your career.