8 Characteristics of A Value-Driven Professional

For every single person who works within a hierarchy, there exists varied beliefs on how one must present themselves. We are the output of our environmental factors and upbringing, and while this does either give us an edge or makes us handicapped, from here on out, the following characteristics I will discuss with you from Donald Miller’s book Business Made Simple is completely teachable.

At Rocket Station, we always emphasize that our team members are people of value, but how can we achieve that? 

See yourself as a person worth INVESTING in

According to Miller, most successful people see themselves as a person with high economic value. If they were a product with set skills, they would be determined to use all skills to the best of their ability to prove themselves worthy within the ecosystem they occupy. Essentially, these individuals are hell-bent in proving their worth by making sure the company that invests in them gets their return on investment. They are, in turn, given more responsibility, are easier to promote and achieve greater compensation.  This is mainly because they are seen as an economic investment.  You must see yourself as someone who can offer value, someone who can bring success to the company. 

If the company is investing x in you, make sure the returns you give back is more. The key to moving ahead is to be more of an investment as possible. Become a great return of investment.

Be a Hero not a Victim.

A person who possesses a hero mentality is someone who has a proactive and can-do mentality regardless of the odds. 

Most of us possess the victim mentality by shying away from accountability, when in truth, it could have been done. What was the reason why you couldn’t complete the task given? Was it because of the load? Is it the internet connection? Or maybe just the situation you are in lead you to do a lousy job? People who act like victims always attribute their failures to things other than themselves. As a result, people will want to do their job for them. Victims always act as if the control is not within their grasp, like they are handicapped by design and that they simply cannot do anything because it is what it is. They have a defeatist mindset and are helpless.

Heroes on the other hand are people who face challenges, fall, try to stand up and fight for their right to succeed in this world. They don’t stay down long. They are quick to learn from their mistakes, eager to prove their worth without asking for charity, and are fast to take responsibility for shortcomings. 

In this life, where there are plenty of reasons to consider yourself a victim, be a hero. 

Keep your cool and know how to manage drama

Know how to de-escalate drama. This is a vital characteristic of value-driven professionals.  There is nothing more harmful to your career than having a dramatic reaction at work. If after reacting dramatically after receiving feedback, people can avoid giving you feedback altogether, but they will have something to laugh about when you are not around if you persist on being the dramatic colleague. 

Instead, learn how to de-escalate dramatic event. How do you do this? You step out of yourself and view the argument as if you were a calm and calculated 3rd party and respond to the dramatic event at the same energy level or lower of the person being dramatic.

For instance, if your co-worker forgets to send over their hours and you get angry and verbally demand that they do so, then you took the drama beyond the level that was accounted for. 

The fact of the matter is, we trust and respect people who resolve drama at a level that is lower than the dramatic energy. So, become unflappable. Have a cool head. People who are capable of de-escalating drama without so much of a problem are not only seen as capable, but they are also easier to respect, trust and are given more responsibilities. 

Accept feedback as a gift

The value-driven professional understands that feedback is the backbone of their growth and moves towards it not against it. They take feedback as a gift and an opportunity to grow. Having said that, not a lot of people can take feedback well, especially if it comes at unprecedented times. But the gracious acceptance of feedback means you possess a level of maturity akin to a valuable team member. 

To make the acceptance of feedback as a habit, establish a routine about gathering feedback. A quarterly meeting about your performance can help you get the answers to the following questions: 

What can I do better? 

Are there things I do that seem unprofessional to you or to others? 

Is there a way you think I can improve?

What is your opinion on the work I did with x project?

This is also very crucial: When getting feedback, aim to get it from people who have your best interests at heart. Know which mentor to talk to and which teammate to ask, listen to it, metabolize it, and make sure you can understand why they are giving you these points to improve without feeling resentment. 

Be Competent in Managing Conflict 

All value-driven professionals do not shy away from conflict. They understand that conflict is normal and navigating conflict is part of everyday life. They know this so well that they know that conflict and success come hand in hand. 

As such, as value-driven professional, you can practice the following tactics to keep yourself more adept at managing conflict:

  1. Expect Conflict. Condition your mind that it comes naturally in collaborating any task and is the byproduct of progress. 
  2. Control Your Emotions. 
  3. Affirm the person you are confronting.
  4. Understand you could be wrong.

Value being Trusted and Respected more than being Liked.

The trait of a good leader is seen in their ability to garner trust and respect versus being liked by others. It is essential to treat others with kindness, but more priority should be placed in attaining a level of authority by performing these things an effective leader can do: 

  1. Set Clear Expectations. Have your team know exactly what you need, when you need it, and what must be done, and how it should be delivered. 
  2. Accountability. Does your team know they have to send x by x time? Do they know you expect a report? How can they punch in their work and measure their performance?
  3. Rewards for Good Performance. Give good work a pat on the back, this pushes team members more. 

Be Optimistic.

People who are brave enough to take risks because they see all the potential versus the odds are more likely to be successful. The see an opportunity, they take their shot, whether they hit or miss, they are quick to persevere and try again. They don’t kick the bucket each time something bad happens. Instead, they positivize their mindset and try to recalibrate how things can go well if they try again. Learning from their mistakes and pivoting as a way forward. 

Have a Growth Mindset

A value driven professional always seeks to improve themselves. They seek to acknowledge their boundless potential and become open to learning new things. They never say, “this is who I am and that’s all there is.” They shift the narrative to, “This is who I am now, and there is no limit to what I can become.”

This June is Pride and Productivity Month at Rocket Station! We are using all our smarts to keep you clever and proud this month of the colorful flag. If you find these articles helpful, sign up in our mailing list and learn new things!


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