The tale of two drivers
We hired 2 drivers at our company a couple of years back. Kashinath & Guru. In different cities, both of them started off making almost the same amount of money and didn’t know much more than how to drive cars. While both of them still work at our company, they have dramatically different stories. One of them takes home more money than the other.
Why Kashinath gets paid more: When Kashinath first joined the company – he was a driver. Just like other drivers we have had in the past. But Kashinath was different. Kashinath didn't say NO. If we asked him to stay back for some work that came up, he didn't frown. When we asked him to help us out with our Team Building activities, he did so, with much enthusiasm. Learnt the ropes and now does the entire set up without much guidance. Since we share the office space with my IT business, Kashinath observed how the Engineers assembled PCs and can now put one together in 15 minutes. From being just a driver - Kashinath has added value to himself, thus making him very valuable to our system. That reflects in his take home salary.
Why Guru does not get paid as much and may just get fired from his Job: Guru may do what's told to him...but the expression on his face is always one of reluctance. His Body Language is so lethargic. Guru has a million reasons NOT to do something. [‘I can’t deliver this letter to XYZ Client because I don’t like travelling in the Bombay Local Trains.’ etc etc]. He is so reluctant to do or learn anything new. Unwilling to go beyond his comfort zone of driving.
The take away and a few questions.
Both of these professionals joined the company at almost the same time. Yet today, Kashinath is almost an indispensible part of our company and Guru is just another employee serving his time.
The only way to get paid more is to become valuable to the company you work for or the client you serve as a business person/self employed. So, how do you add value to your company?
1.Learn - Become an expert at something. If you keep learning, it benefits you as an individual in turn benefitting the company. The more skills you have, the more ways a company can use your services to make more money. So the question is - What effort have u taken in the past 7 days to learn something new related to work? Are you really an expert at anything?
2.Getting Better at your Job – most people would get better at their jobs if they spend some time doing the job. But if you want to make quicker progress than most others, work at being more effective and efficient at doing the job you have been entrusted with. Being acutely aware of how you are doing your job. Be a harsh judge of your personal performance. Ask your boss what you need to do to be able to do your job better. It’s a simple yet a very powerful question to improving yourself at your job.
3.Do stuff beyond your job profile - If you do what you’re getting paid for, you’re not doing anything special. When you take more responsibility, take on new challenges, you become important to the organization. Kashinath’s job is to drive a car. But when he jumps out of his seat to get my bags so I don't need to take the effort, that's going beyond his job. I love him for that. Don't mind paying more for it.
4.Work Harder. Do more – Nobody who worked strictly from 9 – 5 made exceptional progress. You have to stretch yourself to achieve exceptional results. Be willing to spend more time working at your job, at getting better at your job, at learning.
Add as much value as possible to the organization or the client you are working for. You may or may not see the financial gains immediately. But trust me; going the extra mile never hurt anyone. Don't do it for your organization, do it for yourself. You will be the bigger beneficiary than your company. This is the time, although all times are in fact the time to get started on adding thick value.