Ways to distinguish yourself #172 – Manage costs associated with your contribution

Most often, we want to be congratulated for our contributions. Depending on the nature, size and frequency of contributions, we may expect different things – a raise, a pat on the back, a promotion or simply some sort of recognition. What gets conveniently overlooked is that cost that we bring along with the contribution.

Whether you want them or not, there are costs associated with your contribution. Let me take a simple example. If you are a sales person in a company, the costs that you are bringing in will include but not limited to:

* your compensation (salary, commissions and bonus)
* your requests of time from other people (pre-sales, management etc.)
* your expenses – travel, wine and dine etc.
* your perks – your blackberry subscription, phone calls etc.
* sales tools – CRM, lead generation tools etc.
* time spent on your education by you and the other people in the company

In the above example, if you add up all these things, you will notice that the time to “really” celebrate is not when you close that first deal but when you close “that” deal that is profitable to the company after factoring all your costs into consideration.

I picked one example but you can pretty much apply this to any profession. Whatever be your profession, remember that your contributions come with a cost. If the costs outweigh the contributions you are making, you are a liability not an asset.

Now, please don’t take this to an extreme. I urge that you celebrate small victories. On a lighter note, please remember that your celebrations for those small victories are also a cost that someone has to bear.

Note 1: Here is a Squidoo lens that links to most of the previous articles in this series:
Squidoo: Distinguish Yourself

Note 2: The first 25 entries in the series have been packaged in a ChangeThis manifesto that was published on September 07, 2005. You can download that manifesto here:
ChangeThis Manifesto: 25 Ways to Distinguish Yourself (PDF, Free)

Note 3: My latest manifesto on ChangeThis was published on August 6, 2008. This is a photographic manifesto featuring 15 of my mini sagas (stories in exactly 50 words). Here is the link:
ChangeThis Manifesto: Mini Sagas – Bite Sized Lessons for Life and Business (PDF, Free)