Overworked and Undervalued?
Sep 1, 2023
What's happening Fraud Fighters?
In our busy careers, how can we know how good we're really doing? It's like trying to do many things at once and hoping to earn more money for it.
But there are only 3 lever for growing your career.
It's so simple that It's complicated.
Let's investigate further.
Read Time: ~3.95 Minutes
You can only work so many hours in a day
It all began with a single email. "Can you help with this?"
I glanced at it, thought it'd be easy, and promptly replied, "Of course!" Little did I know that this pattern would become my new normal, turning my team into the company's unofficial catch-all department.
Low priority, high priority - it didn't matter.
I took it all on. The word spread, and soon enough, every department, rather than finding their solutions, began to think, "This is suspicious - let's escalate it to Brian. He'll handle it."
I got stuck with all this heads down work. Didn't even understand which levers to push or pull to grow my career.
Many fraud fighters fall into this very trap. Consumed by the all the tasks at hand, they often overlook the strategic aspects of their roles, blocking any professional growth.
You can only work so many hours in the day before burnout sets in.
Most fraud fighters operate at maximum capacity. They spend 100% of their time working in the queue. It's great because that's probably the main reason you were hired but,
Unless you reserve time for yourself, you'll never give yourself a chance to create efficiencies that maximize your time moving forward.
If you never reserve time for yourself, you'll never build better systems, never create templates, never learn new tools, and never find new ways of doing things.
Think of yourself as a 1-person business and be brutally honest with how much time you really have.
You can only have so many jobs
Multitasking often parades as the poster child for efficiency.
Many wear it as a badge of honor, there's a very thin boundary between being versatile and stretching yourself too thin. Believing that the more tasks you can handle simultaneously, the more effective you must be.
You're constantly switching contexts.
One minute you're deep into fraud analytics, sifting through data and spotting irregularities. But then a ping from another department sends you diving into the queue for a customer escalation. And just as you're settling into that task, a third alert shifts your attention to a marketing-related product launch.
It's a dizzying dance of tasks that might leave you feeling busy, but not necessarily productive.
Simplicity can be transformative.
It brings clarity, direction, and purpose. Instead of being scattered all over the place, concentrate on what you and your team excel at. Deliver with purpose and intent.
Recognize that not all tasks are created equal. Overextending yourself by taking on too many tasks can be counterproductive.
It's not about doing everything - it's about doing fewer things but doing them exceptionally well.
You can only earn so much
Are you underpaid or overpaid?
A quiet but persistent question often looms in our minds: "Am I being paid what I'm worth?" It's a valid concern, and at its heart, it digs into a deeper understanding of value.
When thinking about your worth, it's tempting to measure it by the tasks you check off your list. The true metric isn't the volume of tasks you check off but the outcomes these tasks create.
Some days it may not seem like it but leaders aren't valued by how many meetings you've attended or emails you've sent.
Leaders invest in outcomes.
There's a common misconception that our paycheck directly correlates with the hours we put in. It's easy to think, "I've worked X hours, so I deserve Y."
Compensation isn't really about you, the employee. It's about the perception of value you present to the employer.
Some fraud fighters, bogged down by the 'number game', mistakenly believe that there isn't much money in your field.
Your potential earning is tied to the value you bring - the systems you've built, the processes you've improved, and tools you've implemented.
By focusing on outcomes over effort, we can not only enhance our professional growth but also truly comprehend our worth in the machinery of the corporate world.
The highest paid fraud fighters aren't investigators.
They are more like business consultants - who just happen to know how to fight fraud.
Pull all 3 levers together
Pulling one lever can help grow your career,
But you unlock a lot of opportunities when you learn to pull all 3 levers together. That's what I'd call the fraud fighter's 'currency': credibility, budget, and paycheck.
While credibility builds trust, budget provides the resources for optimized operations, and money reflects the tangible value you offer. Here's how I think about it:
Time builds credibility
It's not about how long you work, but how you use that time.
When you deliver strong results on time, you're not just working efficiently. You're building credibility.
Tasks secure budget
Juggling many tasks might seem efficient, but it often leads to feeling overwhelmed without being truly productive.
Every task you say yes (or no) to shows what you prioritize. It's then that you're awarded larger budgets and resources to push your vision
Compensation translates value into earnings
Your pay is not just about the hours you work but the value you bring to the company.
The highest earners focus on impactful outcomes and improvements, often taking on roles similar to business consultants, rather than just completing tasks.
While mastering one lever might set you on a growth trajectory, a balance of all three can reshape your entire career. Many fraud fighters get trapped in a cycle of endless tasks sidelining their growth opportunities.
See you again next Friday in your inbox.
→ Today's action step: Read back through this issue and figure out where you’re at. Find the relevant suggestions I laid out and choose just one to move forward with next week.
If you’re looking to build your career, I hope these can be resources for you:
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