If you were a plumber working on a new house, the general contractor could take a walk around the house and understand what all the subcontractors had accomplished. They only have to look to see the progress.
This is not the case for knowledge workers. Knowledge workers create ideas, and it is difficult to walk around and get a sense of all the ideas that have been created. Knowledge workers then have a responsibility to ensure that their work is made visible in some manner to the people that employ them.
It’s a non-trivial amount of work to communicate upward. It requires more than simply generating a list of things done. There is a fair amount of translation involved in taking low level details and reporting the high level value that is being provided that your audience will require. Sometimes a team has a dedicated person tasked with providing a sufficient amount of upward visibility and sometimes each individual must take it upon himself to do this work.
Trust reduces the amount of upward communication necessary, but it is this same communication which generates that trust. The communication can never stop completely or the trust will erode over time.
If we want our value to be understood by the company, then we are responsible for making sure our employers understand what they are getting in exchange for the paychecks we are cashing.