There are many ways we can measure our value. In a professional capacity, it’s usually tied to our industry-related capabilities and what these actually mean for an organisation.
But what happens when we don’t have an accurate and specific understanding of our professional capabilities?
Well a lot actually…and it has a huge ripple effect.
You see, when we don’t understand our true capabilities, we end up struggling to articulate our value in an interview and so we tend to drastically undersell ourselves.
As a result, we:
1. Settle for jobs that are far below our skill level and experience.
2. Get paid much less that what we really should be on.
3. End up stagnating in our career and ultimately feeling frustrated.
But it doesn’t have to be this way…
So, what’s the solution?
Well, to help us determine the immense value we represent to an organisation, we need to start off by understanding exactly where our strengths lie. The easiest way to do this is to make a detailed list of all our capabilities that relate to our industry and role.
We need to think about all the complex tasks and activities that we do in our current role as well as in previous ones.
Then identify exactly what the underlying skills and capabilities we have that enables us to successfully complete these tasks.
Then we need to ask ourselves:
1. What problems or challenges can I solve for an organisation as a result of my capabilities.
2. What impact can this have on their business?
3. What results or outcomes do I produce for a business as a result of my skills?
4. How do these outcomes fit into their strategic plan or vision?
Once we have a clear understanding of this, we will have a much more accurate concept of where we fit in the market and how we can best position ourselves as a high value asset to an organisation.
Now that we have figured out and listed our capabilities, we then want to promote ourselves as someone who can help an organisation overcome critical challenges and produce outcomes to help them achieve their strategic goals. In other words, position ourselves as the solution and not just an employee.
As stated previously, a lack of understanding of our value, can cost us dearly when it comes to negotiating a salary for a new job or a pay rise in an existing role.
I have worked with numerous people who, once they have gained a solid understanding of their value, have managed to increase their salary by as much as $20,000. You see, they already had all the skills, experience and education necessary, they just didn’t realise how capable they actually were and what this was worth to their organisation.
Remember, our perceived value is measured by what gaps we fill, what problems and challenges we help people and organisation to overcome and what favourable results and goals we can help the business to achieve. By knowing this we can better communicate our value and our worth in terms of salary and rates.
So, stop underselling yourself. Map out your capabilities and the outcomes you can help an organisation to achieve and don’t be afraid to communicate them. You are probably more capable and worth far more than you actually realise.