Success at work doesn’t occur without intimate knowledge of what ‘success’ looks like for your company. Most organizations post publicly within the company the annual goals and the objectives by which they will accomplish these goals. Each of those objectives is ‘assigned’ to an executive in your organization. They are ultimately responsible for carrying through that initiative and therefore ensuring the company’s success. Even if you work in the mail room, you need to understand these initiatives. No job within the company, if you are REALLY looking to advance, is capable of avoiding this responsibility. Every position in the company is there to ultimately pursue the objectives set by senior leadership. Knowledge of these initiatives will be crucial as you move forward in your career. Consider printing them out and taping them up on your desk. These will be helpful to you as you work with the VPs and leaders in your organization to accomplish initiatives.
Ultimately, if you follow these three pillars of value, then success is guaranteed. The three pillars of value are:
- Business & Operational Value
- Value to the Sales Team
- Value to the Customers
Ensure that you are delivering on these three pillars of value. They are measurable and they supersede acquisitions, mergers, bosses you don’t like, political powerhouses, and office politics. Concentrating on the three pillars of values ensures that you have a higher chance of having a position and rising in the corporate structure despite changes that come along the way.
Pillar I: Business & Operational Value
Providing value to your organization is critical. Have you ever really thought about what action items you could act upon to improve the business and/or operational value to your company? Many I have talked to believe that they cannot make a difference. They believe that things are what they are. They see business issues all around, and conclude that it isn’t their position or job to suggest changes or to make an effect in that area.
I am not asking you to step outside of your area. I’m asking you to evaluate your area and level of responsibility and evaluate how it impacts the organization. Are there areas that are lacking that interrelate to your area of responsibility?
Pillar II: Value to the Sales Team
If your company sells a product or service, the sales team is a valuable resource to the company. They can seem pesky at times, but they are VERY important to the progress and future of the company. Think of your relationship with sales as a contract. There are service level agreements that should be kept. You want to provide a value to the sales team that stands out above and beyond the rest of the people they interact with. Try this for a period of at least 90 days. Respond every time you are contacted by a sales representative, as soon as possible. Make it a goal to respond within two hours. Try to go above the service that they would get from anyone else. If you are not responsible for the area in which they have approached you, volunteer to find them the information and get back to them.
You want to be so valuable to the sales team, that they couldn’t imagine working at the company without you there.
Pillar III: Value to the Customers
The third pillar is value to the customers. This is the third ring in the trilogy of success. Always invest in your customers. It is worthwhile in the long run to get to know the customers. Share your contact information whenever you get a chance. Offer to follow up whenever possible, even if you have the information handy when you meet with them. Following up in a day or so with the information will give you a second chance to make an impression. Customer emails and voice mails should get the highest priority. Many have told me, ” but I am not on the sales team, I don’t need to form relationships with the customers.” I disagree. It is imperative to form relationships with the customers. They will give you a perspective that you may not find within the company. They will also provide stable input for you in your career.
Try to impact these three areas to ensure continued employability, increased compensation, and better positions at work.
by Bethany Williams