The guy was a chairman for Wittur Holding, a commodities company, and what he said had a lot to do with taking on greater responsibility.
But Dana, you were eARNING minimum wage. Why bother doing extra work?
It’s a valid point, and I’m glad you asked. Here’s why I did it, and maybe a few reasons you should, too.
Curiosity – I’d never taken product inventory before, or lead a kids’ party or received a shipment of stock. But it sounded interesting, and things were getting monotonous with me just working the cash register anyway. Knowing and doing more made my job more fun, so it did as much for me as it did for the company.
Camaraderie – My managers (who were wonderful people and truly worked their butts off) would work long hours, sometimes open to close. For me to come in for a few hours and just work the cash register seemed cruel when I had the means and opportunity to help them with back-room stuff, like organizing product and getting actual things done. It made me happy to know I could give my managers a break, and in return I was able to develop deeper relationships with them. Which is a win on the making-friends-at-work front.
Value – My aim is to be indispensable, wherever I may be. A person you can’t just replace with the next guy on the street. And the only way to create that perceived value in myself, at least in my opinion, is to be able to do things the next guy just can’t. Yep, you guessed it, that means doing what he won’t. It’s why I’m so eager to take on a task that’s above my pay grade, like inventory and training and whatever else I see the higher-ups doing. Let me tell you, it’s not only made negotiating a raise a lot easier, it’s also made me a person who has staying power.
be a little selfish
Ultimately, I know that taking on more responsibility is good for me. Whether it pays off immediately, the week after, or ten years down the road because it gave me more experience to store under my belt, I know it pays off. So even if you’re making minimum wage, or you don’t feel adequately appreciated for it, just think of yourself. A couple extra skills here and there never hurt anyone (unless you’re skilled at mercilessly killing puppies, nobody should be good at that).
What do you think? Has taking more onto your plate ever paid off for ‘ya? Let me know in the comments!