Boost your company's profits, boost your career

By Michelle Conlin

(Money Magazine) -- The person at your office who routinely brings in millions of bucks worth of business probably doesn't have to worry about job security. Or begging the boss for a raise. Or advocating for a promotion.

But what if your position doesn't directly affect revenue? Better start thinking about how you can become more of a rainmaker -- someone who increases the company's growth or cash flow.

"Today this is everyone's job," says career expert Penelope Trunk, author of "Brazen Careerist." These strategies can help you turn your position into more of a profit center:

Team up with top talent

Ask around your company to identify who the hotshot rainmakers are and what they're working on. Then find a way to attach yourself to one of their projects, advises Jody Miller, CEO of Los Angeles executive recruitment firm Business Talent Group.

Talk to one of the players on the team to explain that you'd like to volunteer and what you can offer. If you work in market research, for example, and your firm is developing a new social-media app, you might be able to help them figure out who the target audience is. Says Miller: "Companies are so lean right now that everyone is eager to have an extra set of hands."

Push an idea up the ladder

Don't underestimate the value of your insights. Upper management is often so obsessed with what's happening inside the business that they're out of touch with what's happening outside. Leverage your knowledge of your area to come up with three new moneymaking ideas. (If you're in legal, for example, you might see a fresh way that your company could license its intellectual property; if you're in marketing, you might suggest some new avenues for client leads.)

Write up brief pitches that give a sense of revenue potential, and e-mail these to the business development folks. Let them know that you're happy to discuss further. Even if the ideas don't go anywhere, your move will show the kind of initiative and entrepreneurialism that companies value, says New York City organizational psychologist Ben Dattner.

Lower overhead

True rainmaking typically involves increasing revenue, but you can also help boost the company's profits by cutting costs. Scour your department for ways to do it: Are there cheaper suppliers available who wouldn't compromise quality? Is there a process improvement that could save money? Are you spending too much on overtime pay? Reducing overhead, after all, makes room for your next raise.  To top of page

Just the hot list include
Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed3.80%3.88%
15 yr fixed3.20%3.23%
5/1 ARM3.84%3.88%
30 yr refi3.82%3.93%
15 yr refi3.20%3.23%
Rate data provided
View rates in your area
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 32,627.97 -234.33 -0.71%
Nasdaq 13,215.24 99.07 0.76%
S&P 500 3,913.10 -2.36 -0.06%
Treasuries 1.73 0.00 0.12%
Data as of 6:29am ET
Company Price Change % Change
Ford Motor Co 8.29 0.05 0.61%
Advanced Micro Devic... 54.59 0.70 1.30%
Cisco Systems Inc 47.49 -2.44 -4.89%
General Electric Co 13.00 -0.16 -1.22%
Kraft Heinz Co 27.84 -2.20 -7.32%
Data as of 2:44pm ET


Bankrupt toy retailer tells bankruptcy court it is looking at possibly reviving the Toys 'R' Us and Babies 'R' Us brands. More

Land O'Lakes CEO Beth Ford charts her career path, from her first job to becoming the first openly gay CEO at a Fortune 500 company in an interview with CNN's Boss Files. More

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.