Most of the time, we compare the work we perform with our salary, and we limit our effort, dedication to excellence and learning to salary, assuming that doing more or better is really a waste of time, effort and resources. After all you do not want your employer to get advantage of you.
Is this really right? Actually limiting your work to the money paid for it, is what really gives your employer the advantage.
Let me tell you why?
In IT management, there are two faces of value: Value Creation and Value Capturing.
Value creation, is the value you create to your client in accordance to money he pays for you. The client pays you a certain amount of dollars to develop a web site with certain features. If you delivered on time and within budget, value is created , the client is happy and you get your paycheck.
However, this is not really enough and is not considered a victory from management perspective. Out of any experience enterprises should get more than money, they should learn something new that becomes part of their wisdom, processes and functions. This that could be applied on the future to deliver the same output faster, cheaper or with higher quality. This is what called value capturing. Value capturing is usually what makes any enterprise distinguished, irreplaceable and/or indispensable.
Same applies to employees! You’re getting paid to do the required job by your employer. Your employer usually decides on your salary according to the value you deliver to him. If things stays the same, your employer won’t mind keep you doing what you’re doing and keep paying you the same salary for ever! However, usually it get worse! the employer might find a cheaper or faster way to get the job done.
What does this mean? it means that you’re responsible of your own progress by capturing value from your work! by learning from experience, by trying to do things differently, challenging your self, reading, reviewing your work, accepting critique, and developing your techniques for efficiency and higher productivity
Seth Godin has rephrase this very nicely in his piece of art: Linchpin
You get paid to go to work and do something of value. But your job is also a platform for generosity, for expression, for art. Every interaction you have with a coworker or customer is an opportunity to practiced the are of interaction. Every product you make represents and opportunity to design something that has never been designed. To create an interaction unlike any other.
So it is really vital to you, to keep capturing value for yourself in each assignment. Your value should drive your salary and not the other way around. Keep creating and capturing value in your work regardless of your salary. This doesn’t mean that you should give your employer the advantage over you for ever. After all, if your current employer do not value your value others will definitely do.
Capitalize your value and see the difference.