Is your firm better off because you work there?
This is a simple but very profound question. You need to be able to answer this question for yourself because others are asking it about you. Every day you get up and go to work and you may not realize that others are watching what you are doing. They are looking for you to bring value. Value that they can use. Value that matters.
So if they look at your work efforts, will they see “added value”?
Don’t move past the question at the top of this post too quickly. It is a serious question. Can you really define and demonstrate that the firm is better because you are there? Make a list and see what you can write down. Then ask around to see what others might say. Are the things that you think are valuable to your firm the same ones that other think are of value? Does management above you agree that the valuable efforts that you are working on are the ones that need and deserve your attention?
Take some time and think through what you are working on, focused on, and pushing towards to see that it is in alignment with the company goals.