Raise the Brand – Investing in your skills
Have you ever felt like you were going nowhere in your job? No matter how much energy you expel, you just seem to be on a treadmill. For most it can be like fibre in our diet – bland and difficult to swallow. Maybe we want a win, the protein of success. Something for us to savour. Feeling depleted can tax our personal resilience, and dilute our sense of purpose. Maybe we need a better perspective instead? To see how even the most routine effort can maintain or raise the value of the brand we represent.
What do you represent?
Imagine you are an apprentice, learning a trade in panel beating and spray painting. Working for a wage that barely compensates the long hard hours. However, your investment is building a reservoir of knowledge and skills. Perfection in the smallest detail is the relentless pursuit of your supervisor as you spend years reshaping damaged metal. The eagerness to do the real work is a daily frustration as you practice to perfect the running weld or the arc of a spray gun.
Finally, after years of intense focus on the basics you are challenged with your first autonomous efforts. Over time you successfully complete more complex tasks until the reward of a Certificate of Trade confirms ‘Craftsman’ and you are signed off at an industry standard. Yet more has been achieved than you may have realised.
Achieving this level for one of the most recognised brands on the planet, the trades-person with specialised skills has now become a market-place prize. Years of honing perfection and exacting detail, have transformed the apprentice into a master. Workmanship and quality go hand-in hand with the brand.
The brand which gives you an identity, is recognised as one of the leaders in the car manufacturing industry. The brand that sets the highest build quality and customer expectations. Rolls Royce, Bentley, Lotus, McClaren.
Stands to reason.
Consider how much the brand you represent increases your professional worth. Like a football player who enjoys an association with Manchester United or Manchester City or Chelsea. They are worth more because of the standards that are expected. The elite of their profession, the best of the best.
Those long tedious hours going through the motions are an investment of your time and energy into perfecting the skills that define your brand. With each passing day, the brand raises in value and as it does, so does yours. They both work hand in hand.
I was told of a friend who visited the amazing facilities of NASA who was struck by how clean and polished the amenities were. When he crossed paths with a cleaner he was quick to remark how superb the cleaning efforts were. The professional in the smart uniform responds – they take pride in their efforts, after all, he is part of the team that put the first man on the moon. How much do you think that attitude to the brand is worth in the market place today? Is he a Cleaner you would hire and how much would you be willing to pay?
Consider now the employee who can’t wait to tell his friends, or log onto the world of social media, and tell everyone how bad his company is. The one he toils at every day. He may point out that the company denies the efforts of a great worker, is constantly letting clients down and delivers bad service. How much might that brand be worth? How much will the employee be worth? Stands to reason.