Five ways to increase your value at work

Scott McKain
3 min readJun 14, 2021

Even as we move into a post-pandemic world, does your work seem like an endless cycle of meetings, updates and reports?

You’re not alone. In a world where knowledge workers are expected to be on-call 24/7, it’s more important than ever to create personal and professional distinction by finding ways to increase the value you provide at work.

Here are five ideas that have helped me in my career:

1) Become indispensable: think strategically about how your unique skills can help your company reach its goals. Share your thoughts with your team and ask them to do the same. Or, if you’re an entrepreneur, make a list of those skills and evaluate how you can accentuate them to enhance your marketplace distinction.

2) Be proactive — volunteer for projects. A large degree of my reputation in my industry was established because of my ongoing willingness to volunteer for positions within our trade association. It didn’t put money in my pocket right away. However, it was an important step to establish my seriousness about my craft among my peers — and put me in touch with leading figures in my industry who became supporters and a terrific base for referrals. You can do the same!

3) Get comfortable with discomfort — push yourself out of your comfort zone. One way to do this is by taking on challenging tasks or participating in activities that require self-reflection. No matter your age or position, you will have to embrace change and leverage it to your advantage. When you get comfortable with discomfort, you’ll find change much easier to live with — and you will become more proficient at discovering the opportunities inherent with all evolving marketplaces and businesses.

4. Show up early, stay late, and work hard on weekends too — it’s worth it!You didn’t want to hear that one, did you? I’m NOT suggesting that you become a “workaholic.” However, all iconic professionals put in the time. Yes, you should seek home/life balance. But I do not know any highly successful individuals who work short hours. As Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has long said, “Today I will do what others won’tso that tomorrow I can do what others can’t.” Most people won’t work hard enough to discover the enriching benefits of personal and professional success.

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Scott McKain

Author of “Year’s Ten Best Business” books, “Create Distinction” and “ICONIC.” Member of Sales & Marketing Hall of Fame and Professional Speakers Hall of Fame.