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How to make yourself indispensable

Becoming indispensable is not about power or position. It’s about taking charge of who you are, what you do, and how you show up.

How to make yourself indispensable

Feeling indispensable to your organization is a great combination of exhilaration and security. But in today’s workplace, where more and more of us feel disposable, what does it take to make yourself indispensable?

It starts with making a great name for yourself–communicating to those around you that you have the attributes of a successful person.

But more important, it requires that you visibly commit yourself to making a difference to your company, your team, your business–even your family and friends. It always turns out to be bigger than just you. But it always begins with you.

Here are some ways to position yourself as an indispensable member of any team:

1. Help others without expecting much in return. Learn to take pleasure in watching others succeed.

2. Dedicate yourself to high standards. Bring your best to everything you do, and constantly raise the bar for yourself.

3. Do what you say you will do. Don’t make commitments you cannot keep. Do what you say you will do and sometimes do more.

4. Be of value to others. Be the one people reach out to — the one from whom people seek mentorship and coaching, information, and solutions.

5. Be open and adaptable. Learn to embrace change and help others see the benefits of moving with the tides.

6. Be honest. Whether it’s a mistake, a missed deadline, or a bad judgment call, communicate openly and work hard to find good solutions to any problems you may have caused. Never engage in blame-placing.

7. Work hard and go the extra mile. People who are indispensable usually expand their role by going beyond their scope. Whatever their job is, they make a point of helping others and reaching out.

8. Learn more by being more. Do everything you can to make more of yourself. Volunteer for tasks outside your usual role; be eager to step up and take on more than your share. Do it with openness and effectiveness and a willing heart and mind, and it will make you invaluable.

9. Learn from every failure and every mistake. However bad the experience, learn to look at it and grow from it.

10. Focus on inclusion and collaboration. Learn to become the person who thrives on working with others.

11. Acknowledge and appreciate those around you. There’s no surer way to gain respect then to acknowledge and appreciate those around you.

12. Stay positive. It’s easy to become so focused on the finish line that you fail to enjoy the journey. Be positive and a joy to be around as you’re building your success.

Remember, the people who go around saying they’re indispensable never really are. Being indispensable doesn’t come from ego but from what others think of you as you help them succeed.

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated March 8, 2021 | Published October 7, 2019

Updated March 8, 2021

Published October 7, 2019

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Making yourself indispensable at work is an important way to ensure job security and gain respect from both your coworkers and supervisor. It can also result in increased job satisfaction and help you attain your career goals. Being indispensable requires strong dedication, effort and work ethic. In this article, we will discuss 15 ways you can become indispensable in your role.

What does “indispensable” mean?

Being indispensable means you are necessary for the success of your team. If you put in the skill and work necessary to be a vital and integral team member, your employer is more likely to value your position. What it takes to become indispensable varies based on workplace and profession, but there are several universal steps you can take to be an invaluable team member.

How to become indispensable at work

1. Maintain high standards

Try to aim for excellence in everything you do, and demonstrate a constant work ethic

. Review employer and client expectations regularly, and measure yourself against them. Aligning yourself with expectations will help you maintain the standards your employer looks for.

2. Go beyond expectations

Accepting extra responsibilities will show you are dedicated to your role and the company. For example, volunteer when your manager needs members for a special project. Another great way to do more than expected is to read the job description for the role above yours. Doing so can help you prepare for a promotion and do more senior tasks in your day-to-day work. You can also ask your supervisor about any available opportunities such as taking the lead on a project, starting a team initiative or leading team building activities such as lunches, parties or outings.

3. Know the office dynamics

Pay attention to your surroundings and how different roles in the office function. With this knowledge, you can better understand how you fit into the dynamic and identify needs that you can help address. Consider asking coworkers if they need additional help if you have time. If your company has a directory or organizational chart, study it so you can match names with titles and faces. You can then recognize people when you see them in the workplace and understand how they fit in the organization and how you might work together.

4. Develop an exclusive skill

Try to find a task that your team needs to complete and become the best person or only person who does it. You can be the one who others go to for help with this particular task or skill. For example, master a certain spreadsheet technique or computer program your company uses. Becoming a subject matter expert gives you the ability to teach others who need the skill, adding value to your team and improving their ability to achieve goals.

5. Be trustworthy

You can demonstrate your trustworthiness by consistently completing your assigned tasks correctly and on time. When coworkers ask for feedback, be honest and offer constructive comments. Your team and manager will be more likely to rely on you.

6. Add value to every transaction

Whether it is an important client meeting or a casual conversation during lunch, try to leave a positive impression on people you interact with. Show interest in other people’s lives and work. This attitude may make people feel inclined to include you in future projects and decisions.

7. Collaborate

Make a practice of including others. Listening to and implementing input can help you become a great team player. Teamwork is often key to success, and working well with others will help make you indispensable. To collaborate more

with your coworkers, work together to create team goals

you can accomplish as a group. You can increase collaborative conversations by regularly holding team meetings.

8. Generate new ideas

Look for ways you can improve any aspect of your role or work environment, and take your ideas to your supervisor. For example, if you notice your team could save more time on a lengthy process, talk to your manager about your solution.

9. Develop relationships

Try to cultivate relationships with coworkers, supervisors and clients to engage in your work community. It is helpful to maintain a professional network to gain a fresh perspective and new ideas. To build your network, you can attend company outings and connect with clients as much as possible.

10. Stay focused

Pay attention to any distractions you experience during the workday, and then make a plan to eliminate them. You can accomplish more and demonstrate your dedication when you give your full attention to your work. For example, if you notice you spend a portion of your time checking your phone for personal messages, try putting your phone in an inaccessible place until you have a break. Keep in mind that it is normal and healthy to take regularly-scheduled, short breaks—in fact, it will likely increase your productivity overall. Consider taking a short walk, having stand-up meetings or doing some light stretches.

11. Stay up to date on best practices

Research, practice or take courses to ensure that you are up to date on all the skills you need for your position. You will be indispensable if you are knowledgeable in the areas your team focuses on. See if you can learn something new that could expand your role or improve your company. Check with your manager to see if there are training courses available at your organization where you can learn more about your role or expand your current skill set.

12. Cultivate communication skills

are all essential to maintaining an active role in the workplace. To practice, pay attention to the way your coworkers respond to your conversations. You can also ask for constructive feedback. For nonverbal communication skills, remember to maintain good posture and make eye contact to show you are engaged in conversations.

13. Be adaptable

The ability to accept change is vital to staying relevant and necessary in your work environment. Showing your adaptability can demonstrate that you are willing to take on new responsibilities and grow in your role. For example, if your company introduces new software that you must use, show that you are enthusiastic about learning it by asking questions or participating in a training program.

14. Appreciate and acknowledge

Find ways to show your appreciation of others. For example, if someone assisted you with a task when you were busy, thank them for their help. If a team member exceeded expectations, compliment them on their hard work. Acknowledging your team’s efforts will show that you are invested in their success.

15. Be a negotiator

Good negotiation skills can improve your performance and your relationships with clients, coworkers and supervisors. You may have to negotiate with your team to find a common solution. Your negotiation skills can help you find that solution quickly. Build rapport

with your team and let clients understand that compromise is part of the process and try to practice negotiating as much as possible.

Virtually every office has one: That employee who is the go-to contact and seems to knows everything and everyone. The office can’t run without them. No one wants to think about what would happen if they ever left.

Being such a critical part of the team has a number of benefits, including a measure of job security. But those indispensable team members don’t just get that way through arbitrary means. If you want to join their ranks, here are seven ways to get there.

1. Channel Elite Athletes

Elite athletes are constantly trying to improve their performance. They fine-tune the details that allow them to compete at the highest level—and that practice holds some valuable lessons for people who are trying to become exceptional at their jobs, says Porter Braswell, co-founder and CEO of Jopwell, a technology platform that helps black, Latino, and Native American students and professionals unlock opportunities for career advancement.

“What I mean by that is not the ability to run fast, jump high, and all the other physical attributes that come with being an athlete. But more of the tactical, being a good teammate, communicating well, knowing how to work hard, being disciplined, being able to multitask—all the things that come with that athletic mind-set. Competing: That’s the mind-set one has to be in before I believe they can perform well,” Braswell says.

2. Review Yourself Regularly

You may get regular feedback and a performance review from your supervisor, but it’s also important to do your own regular review to ensure you’re on track with your own goals and expectations, says Carolyn Birsky, founder of Compass Maven, a Cambridge, Massachusetts coaching firm. Keep track of your accomplishments, training, feedback, projects, and overall numbers related to your job. We often think we’ll remember all of these things, but it’s easy to forget pieces here and there, she says.

Then, periodically and honestly review your progress, set new goals, and look at what it’s going to take to get to your next milestone, she says. These self-checks can help you ensure you’re keeping on track with your own career development and shore up areas that may need improvement. This practice will also keep you ready for the next time you’re up for a promotion.

“One of the mistakes employees often make is forgetting to hold those all together in some sort of file. That can be some of your best leverage to put your case forward and say, ‘This is why I think I should be promoted. This is what makes me really good at what I do,’” she says.

3. Try Raising the Bar

As you set your new goals, look at the metrics that are going to matter and include them as part of your plan, Birsky says. Whether it’s bumping up a sales quota or improving efficiency or cost controls in your business unit by a certain margin, be sure to look for positive measures to which you can contribute and how you can be most productive in contributing to them. Companies value employees who are focused on finding ways to raise the performance bar.

4. Do an Alignment Check

It’s also a good idea to ensure that the areas you’re prioritizing in your career and development are consistent with what the company values, says licensed therapist and career coach Jessica Sweet. You may have a sense of what’s important to the company, but it’s essential to actually be clear that your efforts are moving initiatives forward that the company cares about, she says.

“I would be looking at what the company’s goals are for 2018, and be looking at how my skills and experience align with those goals, and how I can set myself up on any projects that are going on, to add the most value to those upcoming projects,” she says.

5. Speak Up

When employees are afraid to show that they’re imperfect or they don’t know something, it gets in the way of their performance, Birsky says. Learning how to effectively communicate with your boss and team, including asking questions and ensuring that you fully understand assignment instructions and ask questions when you don’t is essential to ensuring you’re performing in the best possible way for your company.

Beyond that, ask for opportunities to get better. “Be vocal to your boss about the fact that you are open to learning. Ask for opportunities to collaborate with another team, or be vocal about your ideas, or you might see a training [you need to get better]. Make your case for it,” she says.

6. Act Like You Own the Place

Ownership is essential to being invaluable, says Andy Chan, founder of Seattle-based career coaching center Prime Opt. Take ownership of your work—whether it’s a project assignment or even a simple spreadsheet. Think about it in terms of the bigger picture of the company and what its goals are. When you take full responsibility and apply strategic thinking to your work, you’re immediately supporting your supervisor and team in a new and more valuable way.

“Every time, when it comes to you learning new skills, it actually opens up a conversation for you to ask for a raise or a promotion,” he says. So, think about what you can take ownership of in your work environment, and treat your work as if you own the company and are acting in its best interest.

7. Make Your Boss Look Great

One of the most important things you can do to be indispensable to your boss is to help them excel, Braswell says. People value those who help them do their jobs better.

“Really get in the mind-set of the person you’re working for or alongside and really figure out, ‘What are they trying to achieve?’” he says. “Through having an understanding of what they’re trying to achieve and having the context, you can then say to them, ‘What can I be doing to help you achieve that goal?’” Once you know where you fit in and exactly the metrics on which you should be focused, you can rank or prioritize your efforts on those tasks and initiatives, he says.

This article was originally published on Fast Company. It has been republished here with permission.

How to make yourself indispensable

So you’ve done it. The job’s yours. The role might not be your dream job, but that’s not to say you can’t get there.

We’ve all been there. We’ve all had to work our way up, doing jobs we didn’t plan on doing to get to where we want to be. It’s not glamorous. Most of us don’t just land ourselves an internship at our dream company straight after graduating, like Emily in Paris would have us believe.

When I first started out, I pinpointed renowned furniture brand, Established & Sons, as the place that I wanted to work. I applied for a receptionist position, which I didn’t get, but they allowed me to stay on temporarily until they filled the role. Then, after months of hard work and grit, I eventually got promoted to Head of Product Development.

How do you turn that starter role into the job you really want then? It’s about making yourself indispensable (which doesn’t mean just saying ‘yes’ to everything).

Stay curious

Immerse yourself in your industry. Listen to the conversations colleagues are having, the topics that are being discussed. In remaining curious, I’ve never stopped learning, and this mindset means that I’ve never been fully satisfied with how something is; you can always find problems to solve.

Share articles with your colleagues and on LinkedIn. Use your spare time to do something that might help you stand out whilst also benefitting the company – there might be a talk or event on that’s particularly relevant. Showing genuine interest highlights real potential. If you’re keen to develop yourself, others will be more than happy to support and develop you too.

Be commercially astute

Being the new person isn’t a disadvantage. As someone new you can bring a fresh perspective. You might be able to spot a problem that’s been overlooked or find an unseen opportunity. Don’t be afraid to point this out, don’t settle for the answer ‘this is the way we’ve always done it’. Just make sure to do it in a way that’s constructive rather than critical and respect their expertise if they disagree.

A great way to build commercial astuteness is by looking at your competitors. What do they do well? What could they improve on? As you build up context, it’s easier to evaluate your own company’s strengths and weaknesses.

Apply your strengths

Don’t waste time comparing yourself to others, focus on what you are bringing to the table and learn to accept you won’t know everything. It’s often easy to identity your weaknesses, but how do you do the more difficult job of determining your strengths?

Think about feedback you’ve received in the past and the positive attributes people have highlighted. Note these down. It sounds obvious but having these on paper makes you remember them. Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback more frequently either, good and bad.

Consider the tasks you do every day, every week. How can you apply these strengths? Don’t be afraid to tell people directly what it is you can offer. This isn’t bragging.

The next level

Making yourself indispensable is about more than doing your job well. It’s the mindset you have. It’s that constant strive for improvement and desire to push things forward.

Be curious, learn along the way. Don’t think about where you want to get in twenty years’ time, think about the experience you have now and what you’re going to get out of it. I never had an end goal of being Executive Creative Director at Mother Design, but I knew I wanted to be somewhere I could apply my drive and love of building brands.

If you follow your passions and work hard, you will end up where you’re supposed to be.

How to make yourself indispensableAbout the author

Kirsty leads the creative output of Mother Design in London. Kirsty brings almost two decades of experience in the brand building space and has worked with an impressive multitude of clients.

Her work stretches from building award winning experiences for Google Pixel and Selfridges, rebranding large complex components of the BBC and Facebook, to working on brand building briefs for the likes of Belstaff, Hunter, Baileys, Hennessy, Jamesons and Nike.

Kirsty has learnt her craft at some of the world’s leading organisations including The Future Laboratory, Google Creative Lab, Designstudio, Scheybeler+company, Dazed & Confused as well as residing at Fabrica, Benetton’s experiential research laboratory in Italy.

Have you ever been laid off? I have. Six months into my first real job out of college, I was released so they could make room in the budget for a website developer. It was definitely not something I’d ever want to experience again. And I’m not the only one.

How to make yourself indispensable

In a 2014 Los Angeles Times article, it was reported that 20% of U.S. workers were laid off between the years 2009 and 2014. That’s one in five people. Today, however, your chances of being laid off are the lowest than anytime in modern history.

But why take any chances? If you really want to avoid that severance check, take some steps to make yourself indispensable.

Keep Your Standards High

You should never settle for something that isn’t your best work, regardless of the project or assignment. Always show your boss that you have pride in what you do and keep your standards as high as possible.

Never Stop Learning

If you want to future-proof yourself, never stop learning. As technology continues to develop, the skills you need for your job will also continue to change. Learn what you need to change along with it so you’re never left behind.

Become an Expert

It’s hard to get rid of the person who’s so good at a particular task that the boss won’t entrust it to anyone else. Become an expert on a critical skill and they’ll have to think twice about cutting you loose. On the flipside, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Even if you’re the expert, if the work gets dropped or moved to another part of the company, you’ll be the expert of nothing.

Be Adaptable

Our jobs are constantly changing thanks to new technology and practices. So when new opportunities come up, don’t be afraid to take them. Learn new tasks and skills to put yourself in a better position to move forward with the company.

Have Answers

Don’t present problems to your boss without having a solution to fix it. It’ll show your initiative. Even if they go a different direction, they’ll see that you’re invested and trying to solve the problem.

Be Honest

The best thing you can do for your career is to always be honest. One of the best commendations I ever received from my upper management team was after I admitted I made a mistake on a big project. My director wrote me personally and told me it wasn’t always easy to admit when we were wrong but he was really thankful that I stepped up, owned the situation and committed to resolving it.

Build Relationships

It doesn’t matter if it’s peer-to-peer or in a mentoring situation, building relationships is key to being well-connected within the organization. Also, keep in mind, no matter how close you become with your senior management, stay professional at all times.

In today’s marketplace, there’s no way to be truly indispensable. However, if you play your cards right and position yourself to be as important to the success of the company as you can be, you’ll make them think twice before parting ways with you.

If you want to make yourself indispensable to others you have to start by making some big changes in your life, starting with yourself. Your life can really change for the better if you make a plan and stick with it. The secret to success in making yourself indispensable to others is to be as useful as possible to them.

How can you do that? You have to meet people’s needs and desires. You have to be there for them when bad things happen and you have to help them solve their problems. The more you can do for them, the more indispensable you will be.

How do you know what people need? There is a full spectrum of human needs and you have to see when you can help and in what circumstances.

In this article, we would like to share with you some practical tips on how to make yourself indispensable to others.

Practical tips on how to make yourself indispensable to others

    Keep in touch with your friends and family: listen to them when they are talking, give them a call from time to time, tell them if you miss them, send your warm feelings via texts or emails, don’t forget about birthdays, comfort them in hard times, introduce them to other circles of friends, be honest with them. Be interested in their feelings: Appreciate them, ask them how they are doing, congratulate them every time there is an opportunity, have genuine interest in their achievement, challenges and problems. Learn together: lend them good books, share with them websites, quotes, articles, e-books. Ask smart questions and answer their questions. Show them your artistic side: listen to music together, send them songs and paintings, let them know of interesting cultural events you hear about. Boost their confidence: Support them to find their main life purpose, encourage them to be themselves, without being a concern of what others may say or think, tell them to follow their hearts, share with them inspirational stories. Be good, kind and show empathy

Practical tips on how to make yourself indispensable at work

We’ll give you some practical tips on how to make yourself indispensable at work because managers value indispensable employees. You probably know that but you think it’s too hard to be one. It’s not. All you have to do is to achieve more work-life balance. Indispensable doesn’t mean exhausted, so here it is what you have to do:

  • First of all, apply for the position you want and you know is suitable for you

You should know by now that all the employees are more productive if they work on the position they want to be in and in a pleasant environment. Your life shouldn’t be all about work, but having a job you love will help you to outperform.

  • When you arrive at the office, light up the room

If you bring enthusiasm to work, you’ll be more appreciated. Don’t be afraid of new tasks and challenges, trust in your own capacities. Help your coworkers if you can, because helping others can make you a valuable asset to the team.

  • Don’t always seek for financial reward

Of course, having more money is an important thing, but there are a lot of other aspects that matter. Learn how to work better, because a job done well has it’s own reward. Don’t let others take credit for your projects but keep in mind not to focus only on the prize.

  • Empower your coworkers

If you want to truly be indispensable at your workplace you have to help others. Try to mediate discussions, try to offer help to the ones that struggle with their tasks or with conveying opinion. You have to contribute to the group’s success by understanding the value of collaboration.

  • Educate yourself every single day

Keep up with the information on the market, research and learn new things by yourself, because, if you didn’t know by now, bosses are delighted by employees who do that. Why? Because this kind of effort is seen as a personal commitment to the company’s success.

  • Create goals, make a plan and track your progress

In order to be indispensable, you have to evolve. In order to evolve, you have to be organized.

In life, one’s desire to be indispensable it’s understandable. You want to be indispensable for your close ones because that can be translated in healthy and fulfilling relationships and you want to be indispensable for the company you work because that guarantees you a feeling of well-being and financial stability.

If you need that you have to make some changes, follow our practical tips and tell us how it worked!

Safeguarding your job is a must at a time when a lot of others are being shown the door. Follow these steps to become an indispensable employee.

Nobody is indispensable, yet companies go to great lengths to retain employees in critical positions. They give big increments, offer promotions and even use stock options to stop these employees from leaving.

Here are a few steps that can put you in this hallowed company.

Develop expertise in a critical task

Whether it is fluency in a foreign language, or knowledge of a computer software used by your company, having expertise in a function can make you indispensable. This does not mean that you monopolise that skill or put up hurdles for others who want to learn that task but, instead, become so good at it that no one else is entrusted with that function. It’s best to learn skills related to the core functions of your company.

Mentor and support colleagues
Organisations value employees who mentor and train junior colleagues. A good mentor imparts knowledge and expertise to the newbie employee and encourages him to improve his skills. But mentoring is not everybody’s cup of tea. Only someone who takes pleasure in watching others succeed can be a good mentor. An insecure person may not want to teach everything to someone who might eventually replace him in the company.

Volunteer to do more
Some people slip into a clockwork mode over time and mechanically do the tasks assigned to them. To become indispensable, step out of that comfort zone and start doing stuff you have never done before. As a start, learn at least one new thing every week. If you learn to do four new things every month, imagine how much more skilled you will be in a year. Over time, these baby steps can enhance your skills significantly and add up to a lot.

Offer useful solutions
Employees who offer effective solutions to problems are seen as people who have the company’s interests at heart. If you have a solution to a problem, don’t go to your boss without working out a detailed action plan. First identify the cause of the problem, then offer the potential solutions. If your idea is workable, it will cement your indispensability in the organisation.

Never stop learning
New technologies and artificial intelligence are fast making humans irrelevant at the workplace. “The only skill that keeps your relevant at work is to constantly evolve, learn and improve. Everything else can be replicated,” says Rituparna Chakraborty, Co-founder and Senior Vice-President of HR consultancy firm, TeamLease Services. The individuals who embrace change and are able to quickly adapt are seen as more valuable than those who cling to outdated principles and concepts that are past their expiry date.

Build relationships at work
It is important to build good relationships, not only within your team and with the people you report to, but also with others in the organisation. It helps to be well-connected with senior people in the organisation. Interpersonal skills and the ability to network are as important as basic knowledge required for the job. Try and smile as much as you can and control the urge to say things you might regret later. This is especially important during a stressful period.

CHECK OUT YOUR INDISPENSABILITY QUOTIENT

Do you specialise in something at work?

A Yes, only I can do it.

B Yes, but I am not the only one.

C No, but will try to gain expertise.

D Not possible for me to learn.

Have you offered solutions to problems at work?

A Yes, a lot of times.

B Yes, a few times.

C Nobody asked me.

D Not my responsibility.

Do you mentor junior colleagues?

A Yes, all the time.

B Yes, sometimes.

C No, but can try.

D Not possible for me.

Have you learnt a new skill recently?

A Yes, I keep learning new things.

B Yes, but not recently.

C No, but I am trying.

D Never attempted.

Do you volunteer to do more than your assigned work?

A Yes, most of the time.

B Yes, sometimes.

C No, but will try.

D I don’t have time.

Do you have good relations with colleagues and seniors?

A Have a very good rapport.

B Normal cordial relations.

C Problems were sorted out.

D Not on very good terms.

FIND OUT YOUR SCORE

Score yourself on the following basis.

A 3 Point
B 2 Point
C 1 Point
D 0 Point

Then add up the scores to know where you stand.

Above 15 points: Indispensable

Congratulations! You are an asset for your company and indispensable to the organisation. A bright future awaits you if you continue with the good work. But the knowledge that you are indispensable should not make you arrogant or complacent.

12-15 points: Valuable

You have done fairly well and are considered valuable by your company. Though you are not really indispensable, you can make yourself valuable by making some changes in your attitude at work. Any improvement can easily get you into the safe zone.

8-11 points: Semi-valuable

Your performance is mediocre and the company does not treat you as a valuable resource. You need to immediately improve your attitude and application to work. Unless you improve, you could be in the firing line soon.

Below 8 points: Dispensable

You are seen as a dispensable resource. If there are job cuts in your company, you may be asked to leave. It is difficult, but you could change your attitude, improving your interpersonal skills and be more proactive at work.

You’ve probably heard the advice that you should “make yourself indispensable” in order to avoid layoffs, get the biggest raises, and earn praise and promotion opportunities from your managers. It’s great advice, but how do you go about it? It’s easier said than done, but it’s not impossible. Here’s how.

Let’s be clear, there’s no way to make 100% sure that you won’t be let go in the next round of layoffs. However, there are some simple ways to make yourself so valuable to your department or company that you’ll be as far down the list as possible, and none of those methods include sucking up to the boss.

Work on Key Projects with High Visibility

We’ve mentioned that working on high-profile, high-visibility projects is a great way to get the raise that you deserve , but it’s also a great way to make sure you’re highly valued. As long as your contributions on those projects are useful and you do good work, you’ll quickly be essential to the success of the project. By extension, the more important that project is, the more essential you are.

Stay Positive and Focus on High-Visibility Work to Get That Raise You’ve Been Wanting

It’s an unfortunate fact of life at most companies that the people who labor in silence, far from…

How to make yourself indispensable

Almost 200 options to choose from
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Ask your boss if there are any big projects you can work on. It may come off like you’re sucking up, but the key is to keep the conversation focused on your desire to work on something with impact and something that your skills would be a good match for. The key is to maintain “continuous visible productivity,” as former recruiter Dominic Connor explains to The Register . The people who survive a round of layoffs are the ones that managers can’t see themselves progressing on important projects without.

Make Sure Your Priorities are Your Boss’s (or Your Department’s) Priorities

If you don’t really get to pick the projects you work on or what your workload looks like, what you can do is make sure to prioritize your work so the things that get done in the fastest, most efficient manner are the ones that make the biggest difference to your team and to your manager. It’s a great way to keep a micro-managing boss off your back , but it’s also a great way to make sure you’re always seen as jumping right on the important things, getting those things done, and smart about how you prioritize your work. All three of those things are good qualities to have, and even better to bring up in your next performance review.

Keep an Eye on Your Boss’s Priorities and Stick to Them to Manage Your Micromanager

Working for a micromanaging boss can feel like being in an unhealthy relationship, but you don’t…

If you’re not sure what your department’s priorities are, ask! You boss or manager should be able to tell you which projects are the ones that are most important to them or to your team’s success. Worst case, pay attention at your next department or company meeting. If you look between the buzzwords, you should be able to tell which projects or initiatives are the ones that are most important. Then look for ways to work on those priorities first.

Get Training to Boost Your Skills, and Pick the Right Skills to Boost

Beyond being smart about the things you choose to work on (and the things you choose to work on first, if you don’t have control over your workload), the best way to make yourself indispensable at the office is to learn skills that are in high demand. Find your niche, or a subject area that you can become the team expert in. If you’re working on a team full of sysadmins and no one’s especially great with Active Directory, a few training classes can quickly put you in a position to be the company’s domain administrator. If your company has no social media presence, reading up on how other companies handle social media for promotion and customer service can give you an inside track to a whole new job title.

See if your company will pay for training classes. If they have to do with your job, many companies are willing to pay for them. Plus, once you’ve gotten the training, you can immediately put the skills to work when you get back from your class. Plus, just by showing the initiative and desire to grow and develop your skills, you show your boss that you’re a great asset. As long as you choose skills that are in demand (either because no one else has them, or because the only person on your team with those skills is overworked and ready to quit), you make yourself valuable enough to escape layoffs and boost your resume in the process.

Keep Your Resume Up to Date, and Keep Other Job Prospects in Your Pocket

As you build those skills and work on those high-flying projects, don’t forget to keep your resume up to date, and keep your feelers out for other opportunities. Even if you’re not planning to leave your job, you should always keep your options open. An updated resume and a list of companies competing for your skills makes you more valuable at work (as long as you don’t go flaunting your job offers in your manager’s face), open to promotion, and it’s a huge motivational boost. There’s nothing better to make you feel good about a day’s work than knowing you’re valuable—if not at your current company, then to someone.

Beyond the benefits at your current job, keeping a few contacts or job offers in your back pocket will help protect you if the rest of these tips fail and you still find yourself laid off. Sometimes people aren’t just laid off for performance or skill-based reasons. In many cases, it’s financial, personal, or cultural, and if you wind up on the chopping block, you want to be able to get back on your feet as quickly as possible.

In any case, jobs are hard to get, and if you actually like what you do (or like it enough that you plan to stick around), it’s worth taking a few steps to protect yourself. Hard work, getting along well with your colleagues, and these simple measures will make sure that you’re one of those people your colleagues know they won’t be able to function without.

How to Make Yourself Indispensable a nd Highly Sought After.

Table of Contents

Be calm and polite.

This is a very important factor. The way and manner you interact with your boss and colleagues. How you transact business, with your colleagues. And those around you speaks volume about your character and person.

This is a critical factor in determining how people will open up to your friendship and trust. When people trust and like you. They will entrust their valuables, job or assignment into your hands to execute.

How you handle it, gives you another greater opportunity. That will eventually make you an indispensable partner.

Be honest.

Be a man of your words. People should be able to count on you anytime, any day when given a task to perform. Avoid procrastination.

Meeting deadline will put a smile on your bosses face. It will increase his confidence in you. Which in turn will make you a more reliable and trustworthy person.

Acquire new skills.

Having a degree from a reputable College or University will be of tremendous help and advantage. But will not stand you out. Because most people have it too.

Acquire more knowledge to make yourself indispensable.

Acquiring additional skills in plumbing, electrical or mechanical engineering repairs. Will always make you indispensable and sort after, because your services will always be needed. Always get updated with the new technological innovations and news around the world

Upgrade yourself technologically.

Especially in the area of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), your skills will always be needed. To solve and proffer solutions in the office and the business environment. Hardware computer repairs, maintenance.

You can learn a good software, you might not necessarily be a programmer or a software developer. But having a basic knowledge of how to use some everyday software such as Microsoft office, photo editing software’s etc. will stand you out.

Be a problem solver.

Truly indispensable employees will help these individuals get their points across and mediate discussions.

Indispensable employees understand the value of collaboration and make every effort to contribute to the group’s success not just their own.

In the long run, you’ll feel less overwhelmed if you have an empowered group of people around you who feel confident expressing themselves positively and executing their duties.

You might also like to READ: Happiness: 25 proven ways to be happy

Be hardworking and productive.

Never leave what can be done today till tomorrow, tomorrow always comes with its own challenges.

Be punctual and conscious of time.

When those working with you notices your punctuality to work and duty. You become a reliable and indispensable person.

Aim for high standards.

Always put in your best regardless of the nature of the job you are doing. People should have confidence in you.

Be trustworthy.

Never cheats, lie or double cross your colleagues, friends and boss because your reputation will always pave a way for new opportunities and greater height.

Be generous.

Most importantly you should know that nobody lives forever, be generous with your knowledge and the skills you’ve acquired over the years. So that you don’t die with it.

Be a team player.

Always carry people along, nobody has monopoly of knowledge. The more you help and teach people, the more you become likeable. And the more likeable you become the more people wants to associate with you, and the more you become indispensable.

Posted by Greg Lhamon | May 5, 2014 | Work | 0 |

How to make yourself indispensable

This is a scary time in the job market. Unemployment is high. So is underemployment. And even if you have a job and are happy with it, rapid change can make you wonder if your position is secure. It can be scary.

Is job security possible today? Is there a way to dramatically lower your risk of job loss? And what about a promotion? Is that even conceivable?

I would answer each question with an emphatic, “Yes.”

Whether your goal is a promotion or simply job security, the key to achieving both is the same:

Make yourself indispensable.

By indispensable I mean that you bring more value to your company than what you’re currently being paid. As Seth Godin wrote:

“The only way to get what you’re worth is to stand out, to exert emotional labor, to be seen as indispensable, and to produce interactions that organizations and people care deeply about.” From Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? 10 Ways to Become a Key Player on Your Team

Let me offer 10 ways you can become an essential member of your team.

  • Learn what keeps your boss awake at night and find a solution. Be a problem-solver. At any given time, your boss has dozens of issues that he’s wrestling with. Things that need to be changed, improved upon, or scrapped and replaced with something else. Your job is to identify one of those problems and find a solution for it. More often than not you’ll learn the issues by simply listening closely.
  • Think like an owner not an employee. Owners are always thinking of ways to please customers. Unfortunately, most employees think primarily about their own circumstances instead. How many times have you been at a mall five minutes before a store opens and you see employees milling around behind the security gate waiting for opening time? And there you stand outside the gate — waiting to spend money in the store — and the clerks pretend not to even see you. Contrast that with an experience I had just last week. I walked into a restaurant for lunch. There were no other patrons in the restaurant. “Are you closed?” I asked. The owner — a wonderful man from Albania — said, “Yes, we’re closed on Mondays, but what would you like?” I told him I didn’t want to cause him trouble, that I’d gladly come back tomorrow. But he insisted. “You drove all the way out here and you probably have a limited amount of time for lunch. I would be pleased to serve you.” That’s how an owner treats a customer. Go out of your way to serve your company’s customers and fellow employees. I promise it’ll be noticed.
  • Do things that aren’t in your job description. Not at the expense of your specific job duties, though. Nevertheless, this is the way you bring real value to your company. Think of it as an equation: Your Compensation + Additional Value You Offer = Your True Worth.
  • Disagree with your boss. There are a few bosses who surround themselves with “yes men.” But they are rare. You have a perspective on your company that is different from your superior’s. So, if she decides to move in a direction that — from your vantage point — you believe wouldn’t be in the company’s best interest, speak up. Disagree respectfully, of course, and accept her decision as final. She’ll appreciate you for thinking deeply about company goals regardless of whether or not she heeds your advice.
  • Be productive, not just busy. There are parts of every job that aren’t fun. That’s why they call it “work.” Often, we busy ourselves with less productive activities rather than focus on the truly important ones. Author Tim Ferris said it this way in his outstanding book, The Four Hour Work Week: “Being busy is most often used as a guise for avoiding the few critically important but uncomfortable actions.” So, dive into the difficult but important work first.
  • Dress slightly better than the dress code. There are those who might disagree with me on this. But I believe if you want to stand out from your colleagues then dress the part. Don’t be too drastic. If you wear a suit when everyone else is dressed casually, you’ll look out-of-place. But if your coworkers are in jeans, tennis shoes, and t-shirts then you might want to wear slacks or a dressy pair of jeans. Ditch the sneakers in favor of casual shoes, and wear a nice casual shirt rather than a t-shirt.
  • Work with joy. Be upbeat. Don’t gossip. Be welcoming to customers and coworkers. Smile. Laugh easily, especially at yourself. I once met a Bosnian immigrant who worked in a store. She radiated warmth and humor. I asked her why she was so happy. Her reply was priceless: “I have seen so much war in my life that any day I can just come to work is cause for joy.” We would all do well by adopting her attitude.
  • Keep learning. If you receive ongoing training at work, soak it up and apply it. If not, then take it upon yourself to keep learning. Take classes at the local university or stay current on trade journals and books in your field. Imagine how impressive it’d be if you spoke intelligently on a subject that is not in your immediate job description. Powerful.
  • Come in early and stay a little late. Even if you’re paid hourly and can’t punch in until the official start time, come in 15 minutes early anyway. Use the time to plan your day or do some reading. If possible, be at your desk when your boss arrives. And when quitting time comes, don’t bolt for the door if you’re in the middle of a project. Find a reasonable stopping point, even if it means staying a little late.
  • Do the right thing. Always. It is tempting to play office politics or cut corners in order to get ahead. Tempting because it sometimes works…but usually only in the short term. Working with integrity is — in the end — the best career advice I can offer. Sometimes that means admitting failure. As a former boss once told me, “Give me good news quickly. But give me bad news more quickly.” We all fail occasionally. Better to own up to it and explain what you’ve learned than wait until it’s been discovered. It may also mean publicly commending someone with whom you have an adversarial relationship. Do it anyway. If you work at a company where integrity is a liability that prevents you from moving forward then perhaps its time to find another job. Don’t put a price tag on your character.

The Pulitzer Prize winning poet Robert Frost once said, “By working faithfully eight hours a day, you may eventually get to be a boss and work twelve hours a day.” Although it smacks of the truth, I’m sure he smiled and winked when he said it.

You may not yearn to be the boss, and that’s fine. At the very least, though, each of us should follow the sage advice that the Old Man on Pawn Stars said to one of his employees: “Chumley, do something for God & country and go back to work.”

Questions: What do you do to become indispensable at work? If you’re a supervisor, what traits do you see in your best employees? Leave a comment below.

How to make yourself indispensable

Knowing the right people can skyrocket your career. Your network is your net worth, right?

Yet the word networking itself makes people nervous. Add to that the expectation to somehow provide value in a way that creates a relationship based on like and trust.

If you’re like most people, you’re probably not sure what “adding value” means or how it plays out in the real world. You may want to build long-term connections, but are having trouble making it happen. Or you may feel like you have nothing to give.

Networking can trigger feelings of unworthiness and self-doubt for many people. You may question your confidence. You wonder if you’re good enough, smart enough, or talented enough.

The best way to get past these worries is to move away from abstract thinking (which lets what-if’s and doubts go crazy) towards concrete thinking. This technique, known as concreteness training, is common for anxiety. You can apply it in networking scenarios, particularly the elusive question of how to “add value” in relationships.

Whether it’s for contacts you’ve made at events, through job interviews or even with potential mentors in your field, here are specific examples of how you can provide value to others — so you can stop stressing and start connecting.

1. Make key introductions

Networking is, of course, all about connections. Have you come across two people you know could help each other? Or one contact who could solve another person’s problem?

2. Teach what you know

Sometimes you’ll come across someone you know could benefit from your experience. For instance, If you’re a master at Excel, you might offer to do an internal lunch-and-learn, which gives you cross-departmental exposure you can draw on when you’re looking for a promotion. If you’re an entrepreneur or freelancer, hold a free webinar or give a talk to your at a local co-working space. You’ll also find there are always less experienced colleagues looking for mentorship.

3. Add a P.S. to follow-up emails

It’s important to follow up with your new contacts, so what if you added a little something extra to your outreach? Experts say the P.S. is an eye-catching part of any email that contacts are sure to read. You can pass along an article they’d find useful or information about an upcoming event, for instance.

4. Bring a friend

Going to a seminar, conference, or meet-up event? Extend the invitation to someone you’re looking to connect with further to tag along with you. Even if they can’t make it, they’ll remember the gesture.

5. Act as a sounding board

If you’re able to think creatively and collaborate effectively, you can help fine tune someone else’s idea or simply offer to be a listening ear. Many of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs pay top dollar to join high-level masterminds and bounce ideas off one another. Filling this role for a new contact — even on a much smaller scale — can be a valuable offer.

6. Ask “What are you focusing on and how can I help?”

When you use active listening, networking becomes effortless. It shifts the focus away from figuring out how to provide someone value. Instead, you’re giving a colleague the chance to reveal it to you.

7. Give compliments freely

Offer to write a letter of recommendation, give a testimonial, Yelp review, or recommend them on Linkedin.

8. Express gratitude for the ways people add value to your life

Email your mentor to share how you took action on his advice. Text a thank you note to someone who referred business to you. If you’re feeling creative, another idea is to send handwritten cards to colleagues on hotel stationary when you travel — just to say hello from wherever you are in the world.

Learn to say thank you, specifically, and from a grateful heart.

You see, life has made many feel as if they are not important and useful. Some have made themselves handicapped while others have used their misfortune to be better, do better and become renowned figures in society.

This may shock you to know that many creative people are not fortunate to have a good or great grade in school. Some others who are doing great have no or have one hand. I was shocked to see someone with one hand doing a labor job, he was digging the ground for pay. I was also shocked to see someone with one hand who is snapping pictures on an occasion.

I have also seen someone with no finger playing the bass guitar. I have seen someone who was deformed using his deformed body and hand to create a unique musical sound that sounds like a saxophone instrument.

What a great discovery of one’s self and good use of it. But there are some others who will have both hands and legs complete with their senses intact yet they will still be looking for someone who will help them discover and use their gift. They are waiting for help from their family members or from the government instead of them looking within themselves to discover what God has placed in them.

God did not just give us talent but he also give us the possibility ability to think, act and succeed. God gave us what is called THOUGHT POWER. Thought Power is the ability to think and control our world. You must know that our world is controlled by what we conceive in our hearts. The heart is governing body of our life.

The world is ruled by two forces. The good and bad forces. These two forces are controlled by the Thought Power. What we do with our thoughts will determine what world we chose to live in. A bad thought leads you into the world of bad and deep-everlasting regret while a good thought leads you into a good world that is more comfortable.

To be bad is easy as to be good is easy. It is the part we chose to follow by the pattern of our thoughts that will determine what world we will invent for ourselves.

God create a good world for man’s pleasure and gave man the free hand to customize and furnish their space in the world He has created. Man is now in charge of his space. It is just like one who goes to a compound and rented an apartment in that compound. It will be no longer the duty of the landlord to furnish the apartment for the occupant. It is the occupant’s duty to do the furnishing. The choice of paints and furniture is in the hand of the occupant, the landlord can choose the kind of colour he wants in his compound but he or she cannot decide the kind of colour you use inside your apartment. The same principles can also be said of the world we are in. The world we are in belongs to God but our space belongs to us by choice and creation of our thought power.

YOU ARE IN CHARGE OF YOUR SPACE

Your space is yours to maintain and not someone else to maintain for you. People want others to take charge of their space of them while they sit as the boss. You must know that everyone has their own space to care for that is why someone who is wealthy in one’s family might not be concerned about how we feel or live because they too have their own space to look after.

Too many people are so bothered by those who do not help them when they are supposed to be bothered about how they can take charge of their space and do better with their life. Just think about yourself and how to achieve your life. You should not forget that the way to take charge of your space is through thought power. Think pure thought about your life and live your thought.

YOU ARE INDISPENSABLE

Nobody can do away with you if you know what you are worth. Right, you are worth more than you get from anybody, it only takes you to get to know who you are and what you can do. Know you ability to the extend that you are proud of having that ability.

To be indispensable means that you cannot be replaced. Indispensable simply means you are irreplaceable. If you are let off from a job while you are indispensable the job will almost collapse become of your absence.

Becoming indispensable is not a word but a work, it is an action. It is what you do that will make you indispensable. You cannot be troublesome in the place of work and say you are indispensable. If you become troublesome at work get ready to be laid off and easily replaced by someone who will not give the system trouble. Pride will one say he or she is indispensable but the truth is when your company finds a better and cheaper person who can do more or offer more than you they will not think it twice to lay you off.

For you to be indispensable, you must know your ability, be loveable, deliver your job on time, and most importantly be humble. With these qualities, nobody will be able to drop you just like that. Before they will lay you off they will first think it twice to say if there be or if there is a better replacement for you.

I will like to hear from you, leave your comment.

MONEY MATTER$ BLOG

Blog Archive

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Did you know that choosing to bring your own lunch to work each day can save up to $3,000 a year? Each takeout lunch can easily cost $12 more than a homemade meal. If you’d put that money into an index fund and contribute to it for 25 years, you could end up saving close to $500,000!

Unfortunately, too many people end up buying out each workday because they don’t realize how much it costs them, or they simply fail to plan ahead. Others may think it would be too much of a hassle to shop for, prep, and bring along lunch from home.

Here are some hacks for brown-bagging it to work with all the savings and none of the hassle.

Friday, June 17, 2022

Wixom Elementary joined in partnership with Community Financial in Fall of 2019. Unfortunately, COVID-19 fo rced the program to take a pause in March of 2020. However, Wixom’s Student-Run Credit Union was back in action last fall and better than ever! Student members have been saving their money throughout the year, and volunteers have been busy learning the business of banking along with other job-related skills. It has been quite a comeback!

Supporting Our Partnering School Districts

Community Financial believes strongly in supporting school districts with the funding that they may need. Donations are made annually to educational foundations (when applicable) in our partnering school districts. Wixom Elementary is part of the Walled Lake Consolidated School District (WLCSD), and therefore, donations have been made since 2018 to their foundation, the Foundation for Excellence.

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

It’s an amazing employment opportunity – or is it? Scammers often hijack the job market and ensnare hopeful job seekers into their schemes. If you’re job-hunting, it’s a good idea to review the way these scams play out and how you can avoid them. To help you out, we’ve put together a short primer on what you need to know to stay safe from job scams.

How the scams play out

There are several variations of job scams. Here are the most common ones:

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Your bags are packed, your itinerary is set, and you’re counting down the minutes until you take off for your dream summer getaway. Before you head out to the airport or get in your car for a road trip, though, read through this checklist of important things people tend to forget before leaving for vacation.

1. Contact Your Financial Institution

Give us a call at (877) 937-2328 before you set off on your vacation. By notifying your financial institution of your vacation plans, they’ll know to honor any card transactions you make when abroad or in a different state. If you’re planning to go overseas for your vacation, be sure to check in to any foreign transaction fees and map out your plan early so you know the best ATMs to utilize to avoid extra fees.

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

We’re excited to announce that Summer of Sharing is back again this year and better than ever before! Donating $1,000 a day Monday – Friday from June 13, 2022 through September 2, 2022. That’s a total of $60,000 in donations and we can’t wait to start giving it away—with your help!

Nominations begin today, June 1 st . Starting today, you are invited to visit SummerOfSharing.org to submit an essay-style nomination explaining how your favorite nonprofit helps the community it serves. These nominations will stay live on the site for others to learn about how each of the organizations are making a difference.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

How to make yourself indispensable When it comes to your career, it’s important to plan and think about ways to reach your goals. Whether that be a great promotion, heading up a favorite project, or furthering your education, making yourself indispensable at work can help you reach all of these goals and more! To make yourself indispensable at work, follow the tips below:

Maintain High Standards

In the workplace, good enough is never truly good enough. Keep your standards high and aim for excellence in every project you work on, or task you complete. Review your official job expectations often to see if you measure up and keep yourself in the loop of the company’s evolving goals and vision. To help yourself along this course, check in with your manager often for progress reports and to see what, if anything, you might be able to do better.

Skills to Enhance Your Reputation and Value to Your Organization

Indispensable employees are valuable. Being indispensable is more about attitude than skill set, and the key to indispensable people’s success is that they know how to work smarter, not harder. They understand where to focus their energy to get the greatest return on their efforts. They take time out to plan and they offer a solution for every problem and they get the difference between being proactive and being reactive. Not everyone is indispensable – but you can learn how to be.

How to Make Yourself Indispensable is a comprehensive course designed to make participants an invaluable employee. It teaches the skills needed to adapt to situational changes at work. You’ll learn how to thrive under pressure and expand your career opportunities by taking initiative, effectively resolving problems, sharing your knowledge, and being an overall positive influence in the workplace.

Learning Outcomes

  • Take ownership of your responsibilities and results and go above and beyond.
  • Perform well under pressure and adapt to changing situations.
  • Be someone others want to work with.
  • Help others improve their performance.
  • Avoid being locked into your role and unwilling to share your knowledge.

Program Contents

  • Take Ownership.
  • Go Above and Beyond.
  • Perform Under Pressure.
  • Be Adaptable.
  • Be a Team Player.
  • Be Replaceable.

What’s Included

Subscribe now and you can download, customize, and train your team today! You’ll receive course files for virtual, classroom, and self-study training. Courses are ready to train or completely customizable. Your download will include:

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  • Course Overview
  • Learning Summary
  • Learning Materials
  • Action Plan
  • Course Evaluation

About the Reproducible Training Library

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Steve Dew is an experienced, professional and engaging leadership consultant with over 25 years of real-world management and executive level experience. Having worked for both fortune 500 level companies as well as small, privately held companies, Steve has led, coached and mentored people at all levels of an organization to help improve personal, team and organizational effectiveness. He is an experienced trainer and facilitator having delivered hundreds of training programs and coaching sessions throughout the United States as well as internationally in Canada, South America and the United Kingdom. Steve has worked with individuals, teams and corporations, and has delivered live public training to as many as 200 participants.

Having led corporate human resources and training departments, Steve knows what it takes to build and maintain a team culture that values employees, drives performance, fosters accountability, and builds commitment. Steve will add life and depth to your training experience by bringing his hands-on experience with the day-to-day challenges you face.

Steve’s consulting and training experience include topics such: employee relations, performance management, interviewing, team building, building trust, conflict resolution, disciplinary action, coaching and feedback, relationship management, succession planning, rewards and recognition, delegation, communication and presentation skills, personal branding, and more.

Whether it’s building your team and creating a culture of commitment and accountability, or trying to head off a mutiny, Steve has worked with leaders and teams to achieve more than they thought possible, as well as overcome obstacles preventing success.

Steve believes that helping others to achieve their goals, at the office or in a training session, starts with engagement. His training and coaching style focuses on practical, time tested, sensible concepts that can be applied by anyone.

Maybe You started a new job or company. What now? How can you be successful and reach your goals? We all have been there. Some essential tricks to simplify the process of becoming indispensable can make the difference in how you feel about your work!

How to make yourself indispensableMotivation is Key. An employee that is acting goal oriented has great chances on being in the right spot at the right time for a promotion or assisting to grow a business. A hard-working team-player, who is constantly improving skills through multi-tasking, taking ownership of his/her work and asking for opportunities to get better, will make a positive impression.

However, it is important to keep the company values in mind. Growing as a person? Yes, but as a new employee, you need to stay valuable for the firm. The company comes first. For instance, growth is possible through helping others grow, especially through working closely with the boss and being supportive of your team. Face-to-face interaction is an important aspect of your personal branding.

Furthermore, review, reflect on your assets. Additional to reviews from your boss or peers, it’s essential to check yourself and keep track of your successes. That last part is often forgotten.

A trick on how to efficiently document is to keep a file or even a personal homepage, which you update on a regular basis with your achievements. This homepage can be shared with mentors, other business associates or team members. The way you communicate this information will be critical to create an image of your value or even when it is time to request for a promotion. Sell your skills once you have proof of your efforts!

The journey is the destination.

It’s ok to take a risk. Whether you succeed or fail, you are in the position to learn and show the intent to push forward. Planning is progress, as the more you plan to be indispensable, the more you learn to execute successfully.

Although focusing on your own brand and how you communicate it will show others how indispensable you are, equally important is to what degree those you work with feel they can reach out to you for help. Whether you are offering advice or how to use technology or where to find resources, when you can assist others, you increase your own value. Of course, helping others is a characteristic we should all spend more time on developing!

Let’s make it inconceivable to work without you! Watch for a free tool soon on specific ways to communicate your assets to your organization!

Monrose Murugi

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Monrose Murugi

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How to make yourself indispensable

When companies are downsizing, they often start with those who bring the least value to the firm. From there, they target people who can be easily replaced or whose jobs other existing employees can easily do. In these frightful economic times, strive to be an indispensable employee, one who will leave a wide gap if you ever decide to leave. Better still, being an indispensable employee puts you in a better place when negotiating for a pay rise.

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Some proven ways of being indispensable include:

Doing something no one else can do

This goes without saying. If you want to become a corner stone for your company, you have to do things that no one else can be able to do. This includes possessing unique skills that are extremely beneficial for the company to the point where they’ll find it difficult to replace you.

We all know how fast employers replace workers but if you possess extremely unique skills, they’ll find it difficult to let you go and may even offer a raise just to keep you.

Best performer

You have to become one of the best the company has ever had. This does not mean you compete with people, it means you bring the best you possibly can to the table and give it your all. This is usually easy if you are very passionate about your career because the motivation is intrinsic.

If you bring a lot of traffic to the company’s website, bring huge profits to the company and your work is of the highest quality at all times, you may just be on your way to being indispensable to the company.

READ ALSO: Job loss: 5 ways to prepare before it happens

Multi-tasker/ Chameleon

Train yourself to do all the work in the different departments in the company. You have to blend in everywhere and be able to do any task assigned to you. Don’t just do one thing and expect to be irreplaceable. Make it your mission to learn all or most of the skills needed in the company and they’ll be unable to replace you with time.

Why would they want to replace someone who can do 8 different tasks in 8 different departments seamlessly? You become important because you can do work of 8 people. E.g a journalist who’s also a doctor by profession so she can host a show, write articles, report news, interview important guests, edit videos and give expert opinions on everything related to health.

Stand out

You can become indispensable by completing all tasks before deadline and taking initiative. You can also give genius solutions to problems that have been plaguing the company for long. Employers are looking for people who can help the company solve the deeply-seated problems and improve the performance and profits of the company.

If your contributions helps them achieve that on a wider scale, you may just become a cornerstone for the company at some point in your career.

How to make yourself indispensable

How to make yourself indispensable

I have had quite the number of panicked phone calls from candidates over the past month who have expressed their concern that they may be retrenched due to the economic climate. They will normally ask for advice on what they should do, and my answer is always: make yourself indispensable. Making yourself indispensable is like planting a tree, the best time to do it is 10 years ago (or whenever you started working at the company) but the next best time is today!

As a recruiter I have a behind the scenes understanding of companies’ HR functions and I will tell you a little secret. Companies normally retrench the worst performers first. Of course, not all retrenchments can be avoided but if you are indispensable to the company, they will normally do everything that they can to help you.

The burning question from all my candidates is always “how do I know if I am indispensable?” and I answer their question with more questions:

  • Are you punctual?
  • Do you take off work often?
  • Do you volunteer to help your manager regularly?
  • How long have you been at your company and why haven’t you been promoted? (not always a valid question but it’s a good indicator that the company values you if you have been promoted)
  • Do you add value to the company? (do more than just what the manager asks or tells you to do)
  • Have you achieved anything for the company that isn’t part of your job description?
  • Do you get along with everyone in the office?

Sometimes there are circumstances that are out of your control but it’s always best to avoid drama, late coming and thinking that you are just limited to the job duties written in your contract.

Every candidate thinks that they are hardworking, go the extra mile and are loyal and for these reasons I have listed measurements that I find most candidates don’t think about.

Even though you may feel that it is too late to start now I can promise you that it is never too late. Your boss is just a human being and I doubt that they are currently stress-free. Have you spoken to your boss and genuinely asked if they are okay? Probably not. The support and assistance that you give them now will create a good impression, even if it just means that you get a raving reference from that manager if you end up leaving the company.

How to make yourself indispensable

Whether you’ve just started a new job or you’ve been in your existing one for some time, there is nothing quite like the feeling of being indispensable within your organisation. It’s great for your company, and it goes a long way in boosting your confidence and overall enjoyment at work.

But how does one become indispensable? We’re glad you asked.

7 Tips to Become Indispensable in Your Workplace

Being an indispensable member requires making a great name for yourself; communicating to those around you that you have the attributes of a successful person. Now while that may sound a little “look at me”, it’s actually more about demonstrating positive qualities, consistently, that highlight what you bring to the team. And this does involve a conscious effort to be seen.

1. Help others without expectation

Being selfless at work goes a long way. Think of those in your office that are generous with their time. These are usually people you would miss if they were to leave. Make a habit of helping others where you can, without expecting anything in return. Position yourself as the person that people can call on if they’re in need.

2. Raise the bar

Dedicate yourself to holding high standards. Set out to always achieve above what is expected, showing that your work ethic and output is a cut above the rest. This doesn’t necessarily mean working extra hours. It could be adding extra considerations to your work, thinking of how you can add more value, rather than just doing the basic standard that is expected in your role. These extra stretches stand out.

3. Do what you say you will

If you make a commitment to do something or be somewhere, make sure you follow through. Become known as the person who always shows up and does what you’ve committed yourself to. This speaks volumes about your character and lets the company know that you can be counted on.

4. Be open and adaptable

Things can change quickly within a workplace, and those who don’t embrace change can make it tough on the company. Learn to roll with the punches and demonstrate your malleability and willingness to adapt to change. This positions you as a person that the company can trust to get on with the job, no matter what’s going on.

5. Work hard and go the extra mile

As well as holding high standards, people who are indispensable usually expand their role by going beyond their scope. This could mean offering to take on work that is not within your daily tasks or offering to hold a training session based on the topics which you often find yourself helping others with. Spot a gap that you could fill and go forth to add value to it.

6. Stay positive

Workplaces come with a whole crazy mix of dynamics, and this can be draining on staff. Staying positive at all times, and being conscious of spreading your optimism can do big things for keeping the office vibe high and happy. This simple act makes people a magnet and quickly shows those in leadership that you are someone whos energy the office needs to stay upbeat.

7. Consider everyone as equal

Considering everyone within your organisation as equal helps to shift your mindset where those in higher roles are more accessible, and those in more junior roles are seen as people to help bring to their full of potential. This removes any fear to become friendly with senior staff, and it helps you to see everyone in your office as someone you can add value to.

For more tips on how to get ahead in your workplace, check out our blog . If you’re looking for a change, our Job Seekers page has loads of helpful resources, or you can give us a call directly to discuss where you can be your best indispensable self.

How to make yourself indispensable

It’s common knowledge that every employer wants a hard worker, but not every employee realizes being a hard worker isn’t the same as being indispensable.

If you want greater job security, respect from your colleagues and opportunities to grow your career, the key is to know how to make yourself indispensable at work.

In other words, you need to become the employee that — when layoffs roll around — your bosses fight for. The one who makes them say “Oh, we can’t lose her. She’s our go-to person for __________.”

Below are six ways to go from a hard worker to an indispensable employee.

1. Solve Problems

Anyone can complain about a known problem, but not just anyone can identify the true source of a problem or go out of their way to solve that problem. An indispensable employee can.

As soon as you start working for a company, you’re likely to hear about an ongoing problem that no one has bothered to solve. If you want to get noticed in all the right ways, this is a perfect opportunity. Consider the problem, research possible solutions and present them to the office.

When you propose such solutions, be ready to answer questions like these:

  • How will this make the office run more smoothly?
  • How does it work?
  • What makes it better than other solutions?
  • Why should we try it?
  • Who will be in charge of it?

Being prepared to answer these questions not only shows you’ve thought things through, but also turns you into something of an authority figure in the eyes of your colleagues. With well-earned authority comes respect, trust and indispensability.

2. Help Your Colleagues

Hard workers do their work, and they do it well. Indispensable employees do their work and then some. They take the initiative to do more than what they’re given, to go out and find assignments and to help out other employees when they see opportunities to do so.

Granted, you can’t do all your colleagues’ work — and you shouldn’t. However, taking on a little extra work to help a struggling or overburdened coworker accomplishes three things:

  • It makes that colleague eternally grateful and an ally
  • It shows your bosses that you work well with others and you’re not afraid to go above and beyond
  • It helps you become a more versatile worker, possibly learning new skills from the tasks you’re helping your colleague with

The bottom line is that helping others at work helps you, them and the entire office. As an added bonus, learning new skills by branching out of your comfort zone makes you even more employable should you ever choose to work elsewhere.

3. Propose Ideas

Another important part of how to make yourself indispensable at work is to share your vision.

Similar to solving problems, proposing ideas means getting proactive. It’s a little bit more than just fixing a kink in workflow, though. Proposing an idea, in this sense, means identifying a way to improve your work environment, then making it happen.

For instance, maybe you hear your bosses discussing the importance of public relations. You also notice that some of your colleagues seem less-than-thrilled with their repetitive routines. Then an idea strikes: You imagine solving both concerns with one solution — a fundraising event.

After a pitch like this, one of two things can happen:

  1. The idea is applauded but not put into effect.
  2. The idea is accepted and built upon by the rest of the team.

No matter which of these two results you meet, you’ve already made yourself more noteworthy in the office. You’ve put yourself out there as a person with passion, drive and, in this example, a philanthropic spirit.

If result No. 2 is the victor, there’s a good chance you’ll be tasked with running the operation you’ve proposed. Boom — just like that, you’re the go-to person for a new project. Really, you’re the only person right for the job.

4. Learn From Everything You Do

With any luck, proposing a good idea will lead to more responsibilities and a more unique position. The more specific your role, the better. After all, if you’re the only person who knows how to do what it is you do, it’s going to be near impossible to replace you.

As you continue to advance in your career, always maintain a healthy appetite for knowledge. No matter how big or small the task at hand may be, when you get a chance to learn a new skill, take it. Master it. Own it.

Each time you do this, you accomplish quite a bit in one fell swoop. You …

  • Build confidence in yourself, which helps you to
  • Project confidence at work. As a result, you
  • Become more of an authority figure to your colleagues and
  • Become a greater overall asset to the company.

With the right attitude, this chain reaction is not at all unrealistic. All you need is a genuine thirst for knowledge and the desire to use what you learn.

5. Share Your Passion

Hopefully you’re already passionate about your work, though it can be difficult to maintain that same level of passion throughout your career. If you take opportunities to keep your work life interesting, that will be a big step in the right direction.

Being passionate shows your fellow workers you care about your work and you like where you’re at. It encourages others to be positive as well. Every manager wants a worker around who has that kind of effect. A worker like that — one who genuinely likes what they do and wants others to share that positivity — is a rare gem.

If you’re saying “What passion?” then it might be time to reevaluate your work life. It’s not that you’re necessarily at the wrong job, but you may need a reminder of what drives you.

Regardless of how you feel about your work in this exact moment, it’s worth the long-term investment to takes steps toward maintaining a passionate outlook on your work. As a sustainable force of positive energy, you’ll be that beloved colleague who no one wants to lose.

6. Build Relationships at Work

One of the greatest truths about how to make yourself indispensable at work is that you can’t do it in isolation. You could be the hardest worker in the office, but without your colleagues’ respect and appreciation, that hard work will go largely unnoticed.

So network. Don’t just talk to your officemate — talk to everyone. Bounce around ideas with your boss. Use lunch to chat with colleagues from different departments. Take project ideas to any and all workers who you think could contribute.

The more people know you — in a positive way, of course! — the more of impression you make on the office as a whole, and the less likely it is that you’ll ever be overlooked professionally.

How are you making an impression at work? Share your thoughts on how to make yourself indispensable at work in the comments!

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Course Category: Self-Study Courses

CLE Hours: 1.0

Course Level: Basic

Indispensable employees are always indispensable, no matter where they go or what they do. That’s because it’s more about attitude than skill set. They know the key to their success is to work smarter, not harder. They understand where to focus their energy to get the greatest return on their efforts. They take time out to plan and they offer a solution for every problem. They get the difference between being proactive and being reactive. They also know they are replaceable…and perhaps most importantly, they want to be replaceable.

Course Year: 2018

Self-Study Instructions

Access Period

After you purchase a self-study course you will receive an enrollment email. If you do not receive an enrollment email please check your spam and make sure you add [email protected] to your safe senders list.

To access course materials after enrollment please click on “My Courses” then “Self-Study” at nala.education.

Self-Study courses expire after 1 year.

Courses are priced for individual use and consumption and are not intended for rebroadcast and sharing.

Refunds or Cancellations

No cancellations or refunds are provided.

Self-Study Instructions

All self-study courses qualify for CLE through NALA. For more information on other institutions please click here.

No, a textbook is either included or not necessary for the self-study courses.

No, the courses are designed as continuing education courses and may qualify as meeting continuing education requirements for professional certifications and attorney licenses. In addition, the courses may be used in the classroom to supplement formal training. However, the courses are not designed to take the place of formal paralegal training as may be available through a community college or university.

Job security is a serious concern for many employees in today’s workforce. Knowing that so many positions are being outsourced, cut, or revamped, makes it especially challenging to know that anybody’s job is completely safe. Especially with machines on the rise, who knows what jobs will survive as robots move into the workplace . That’s why you need to make yourself indispensable
in the workplace.

Being indispensable means much more than just being irreplaceable . As the saying goes: everyone is replaceable. Indispensable people are the ones we don’t want to imagine replacing. When issued a challenge, they simply make things happen by understanding what needs to get done and adapting their skills accordingly.

Want to be indispensable to your employer? Here’s how:

Pick a Career Path You Enjoy

They say that if you pick a job you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. I don’t wholeheartedly agree with this, but it certainly makes things easier. For example, if you’ve despised math since grade two, you probably shouldn’t become an accountant. Every work day would be a drag. You would sit at your desk, watching the clock from 9:02 AM until 4:58 PM when you know nobody will question you going home. It may be a somewhat depressing analogy, but if you’re working a job you don’t enjoy, it’s almost impossible to put in your best effort.

It might be that your co-worker Simon has always found numbers exciting and can do six-figure sums in his head. When it comes to accounting, Simon’s best effort will come as second nature. You’re not going to shine next to Simon, so when your boss has found a software that dramatically decreases the need for labour, who’s more likely to be made redundant?

How to make yourself indispensable

Find Out Exactly What’s Expected of You

If you’ve aced an interview due to your wealth of experience in the industry, it can be easy for your boss to assume that you know exactly how their particular business operates. For example, one accounting firm can’t be that much different than the next, right?

The truth is, a business might appear similar to the one down the road, but their internal operations could be completely different. There could be various in-house procedures, practices, and policies that you’re utterly ignorant of, through no fault of your own. All the while, you think you’re smashing out tax time, but in your boss’ eyes, you look complacent and incompetent.

Don’t risk it. If you don’t know what’s expected of you, you can’t do your job effectively. If you can’t do your job effectively, you can’t stand out. Simon wins again.

How to make yourself indispensable

Ask for Feedback

Too many people associate the word ‘feedback’ with negative connotations. Some people even fear reviews and feedback from bosses. However, the reality is that feedback is a blessing. By providing this feedback, your boss is giving you credit in one way or another.

Either they will think that you are performing well, or you’re capable of doing better. People don’t critique a lost cause, so take advantage of the opportunity. Adapting to feedback is a great way to show that you’re capable of improvement; that you’re capable of being the best.

Better yet, be proactive and ask for feedback. Asking your boss for feedback not only shows initiative, but it shows that you hold their opinion highly. Doing so will also make you both memorable and respectable. The feedback you receive will allow you to be better at what you do! There’s no better way to demonstrate indispensability. This is how you gain the edge against Simon.

“Most employees just execute, but if you’re one of the few who are constantly coming up with new ideas and are taking on new responsibilities that aren’t required of you, this will go a long way in making you indispensable.” – Andy Teach, From Grad To Corp.

How to make yourself indispensable

Want to be a part of a workplace that truly values their people? Have a look at our current openings at HTG and find your fit , no matter what your passion is.

How to make yourself indispensable

Everyone wants to be the ‘go to’ person in their field at work; it’s great for your confidence, managers rely on you and you should feel a great sense of job security. Being indispensable at work means making yourself irreplaceable.

Here are our seven tips to make yourself indispensable at work:

1. Be seriously reliable

Reliability isn’t just about showing up on time to meetings. It’s about being efficient and cooperative when things get tough and being the person that people in your team turn to when they need to get something done well and quickly. Being reliable should never make you feel that you are being taken advantage of so make sure your manager knows who you’re helping and on what projects.

2. Make your manager’s job easier

If you’re making your manager’s job easier or taking responsibilities off them that allows them to concentrate on their managerial duties, then they’re likely to fight to keep you if it was ever in debate. Having someone influential on your side at work is very important. Try and find a gap in skills so that there are things you can do that your boss can’t – essentially, you need to make them look good by adding value to the wider team.

3. Volunteer yourself for key projects

Focus on and prioritise work that is most important and timely, not the work that is easiest or quickest to do. Key projects are likely to give you exposure to the wider business and volunteering, when other employees don’t, will ensure that you are seen as a dedicated go-getter and a valuable member of the team.

4. Be the expert.

Become the go-to person for your area and try to monopolise a particular skill. When there is a task that needs to get done and no one is properly equipped to take it on, learn the skills required and become the person who knows how to do it best. Having a USP, as well as expanding your skills, will guarantee that you are indispensable at work.

5. . and share your knowledge

While it’s great to position yourself as an expert with specialist knowledge and skills, it’s also important to share your expertise with your team and add value to the wider department and business. Be willing to educate others and gain yourself a status as an invaluable training asset.

6. Build relationships with senior managers

Being connected and building relationships with people who matter in the business can not only make you indispensable in your current role, but can take you a long way in your career. If you have exposure to managers on a daily basis, then you might be top of mind when it comes to promotion time.

7. Offer solutions

Managers don’t want problems – they want solutions. So if you want to become indispensable at work, you need to find ways to solve problems faced by the business. When you overhear your colleagues complaining about something that isn’t working, figure out how to fix it and you’ll increase your value to your manager and to the company as a whole.

When you’ve made yourself indispensable at work, start to position yourself for your next promotion. Find out how to move into a management role.

When Sharon Owen left a good job as a human resources manager to take on a six-month contract in a similar role her friends thought she’d gone crazy. Fortunately Sharon’s skills and knowledge proved indispensable and so her six-month contract at Littlewoods, the retailer, turned into a permanent job.

“Even if at the end of six months Littlewoods didn’t have a job for me I would have been more employable because I learned how to manage a very large project – a Littlewoods opinion survey of 27,000 employees – gained valuable experience of dealing with senior people in the business and had the opportunity to gain more contacts,” says Sharon, a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin.

Sharon was previously employed as a human resources manager at Kwik Save’s head office in north Wales, but was facing redundancy along with 600-700 other employees, following the company’s merger with Somerfield.

“I knew I wouldn’t have my job a year later, but I chose to stay and gain experience of managing redundancies and the integration of the two companies.”

Sharon’s commitment to planning her career and learning new skills has resulted in her flourishing, where others flounder.

In the fast-paced world of work, the skills you have today may become dispensable tomorrow, so to ensure you keep earning you need to keep on learning and looking ahead to the next opportunity. “People spend more time planning their holiday every year than their career,” observes Dr Peter Hawkins of Liverpool University’s Graduate Into Employment Unit.

He exhorts graduates to develop a new way of thinking and recognise that “to be employed is to be at risk and to be employable is to be secure”.

Make yourself more employable by becoming indispensable in some way. You could achieve this by making the most of a skill, knowledge or ability that no one else in your company possesses.

Other ways you can improve your employability rating is by being prepared to volunteer for new projects, knowing and understanding exactly what is expected of you and going the extra mile.

A willingness to embrace new technology will also help you go far. “It’s not enough to know word processing,” says Jo Bond, managing director of career and redundancy counsellors Right Management Consultants. “If you can put together an audio visual presentation using PowerPoint, then you have the edge over someone else. It’s nice if your company provides IT training, but if they don’t, provide it yourself.”

Add a positive attitude to your commitment to learning. Eileen Mulligan, an award-winning businesswoman who helps individuals and organisations achieve their work goals, says the best attitude in the workplace is one of humility. “If you find something difficult, say it. It brings a far better response in people than if you just soldier on and make mistakes,” she says.

But even if you have done everything to keep your job and grow within your company, you may still fall foul of redundancy. “It shouldn’t be a shock when you find that you are dispensable,” says career coach Mike Duckett. “Thinking that you are indispensable will set you up for a big shock, so keep learning.

“Never give up and continually check that what you are doing in the current job is in accordance with your career plan and if it is not, change the job.”

How to make yourself indispensable

How to make yourself indispensable at work

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How to make yourself indispensable at work

Nobody is indispensable, yet companies go to great lengths to retain employees in critical positions. They give big increments, offer promotions and even use stock options to stop these employees from leaving.

Here are a few steps that can put you in this hallowed company.

  • Develop expertise in a critical task
    Whether it is fluency in a foreign language, or knowledge of a computer software used by your company, having expertise in a function can make you indispensable. This does not mean that you monopolies that skill or put up hurdles for others who want to learn that task but, instead, become so good at it that no one else is entrusted with that function. It’s best to learn skills related to the core functions of your company.
  • Mentor and support colleagues
    Organizations value employees who mentor and train junior colleagues. A good mentor imparts knowledge and expertise to the newbie employee and encourages him to improve his skills. But mentoring is not everybody’s cup of tea. Only someone who takes pleasure in watching others succeed can be a good mentor. An insecure person may not want to teach everything to someone who might eventually replace him in the company.
  • Volunteer to do more
    Some people slip into a clockwork mode over time and mechanically do the tasks assigned to them. To become indispensable, step out of that comfort zone and start doing stuff you have never done before. As a start, learn at least one new thing every week. If you learn to do four new things every month, imagine how much more skilled you will be in a year. Over time, these baby steps can enhance your skills significantly and add up to a lot.
  • Offer useful solutions
    Employees who offer effective solutions to problems are seen as people who have the company’s interests at heart. If you have a solution to a problem, don’t go to your boss without working out a detailed action plan. First identify the cause of the problem, then offer the potential solutions. If your idea is workable, it will cement your indispensability in the organization.
  • Never stop learning
    New technologies and artificial intelligence are fast making humans irrelevant at the workplace. “The only skill that keeps your relevant at work is to constantly evolve, learn and improve. Everything else can be replicated,” says Rituparna Chakraborty, Co-founder and Senior Vice-President of HR consultancy firm, TeamLease Services. The individuals who embrace change and are able to quickly adapt are seen as more valuable than those who cling to outdated ..
  • Build relationships at work
    It is important to build good relationships, not only within your team and with the people you report to, but also with others in the organization. It helps to be well-connected with senior people in the organisation. Interpersonal skills and the ability to network are as important as basic knowledge required for the job. Try and smile as much as you can and control the urge to say things you might regret later. This is especially important durin ..

Note: We are inspired to use this content from various sources of Internet. This is for student’s learning and motivation purpose. We do not claim this to be our own.

In the current age of massive technological disruption, the path to success as a knowledge worker is not to work to become indispensable, but to work to become dispensable.

In the long run a robot or even just an algorithm is probably going to come along and make us all completely dispensable, but until then, here’s a few things we can do as knowledge workers to stave off deskilling in our increasingly automated world, and also manage the ever increasing amount of information available.

We all want to be needed. It feels good. But sometimes we go about becoming indispensable in scarcity-driven ways.

It’s maybe trying to look busy and important, or being involved with everything or across everything. Maybe micromanaging. Maybe not bothering to fix the root cause, because we know how to do the fire fighting when it comes up. Maybe leaving that long tedious processes in place that only we know how to maintain. Maybe not commenting code or documenting systems and processes. Maybe hoarding knowledge instead of sharing it with others.

This is scarcity driven behaviour, and yes we can all probably recall scenarios where being indispensable in this way has been rewarded. But as a knowledge worker in this age of technology, working to be dispensable is a better strategy.

How to make yourself indispensable

Roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.

The 80:20 or Pareto principle tells us that 20% of the inputs produce 80% of the outputs — meaning 20% of the inputs are very high yield. Applying this to knowledge work means choosing the right things to do. Often these activities lie in the upper right “non-urgent but important” area of the Eisenhower Quadrants (popularized by the late Stephen Covey). In the modern information-overloaded world of work, ignoring the low yield tasks, (which are often then the “urgent yet non important” 80%), and focusing on the high yield activities is more useful than ever.

Share the knowledge you have with others.

Liz Wiseman wrote a great book called Multipliers, which forced me to ask some hard questions about my own workplace behaviors.

Ask yourself — am I a “diminisher”? Do I try to be the one who has the “right” answer all the time?

Or are you a “multiplier”? Do I share knowledge freely and acknowledge when I don’t know or am wrong?

This time has also been called the Information Age, and now more than ever, hoarding information is a weak strategy. Make yourself dispensable by sharing what you know freely with others, to multiply knowledge.

This is probably the most important thing you can do. Always be on the lookout for ways to automate your job further, or to make things more efficient.

If you aren’t looking for ways to automate your job, you can be absolutely sure that someone else in your organization, or something else (technology!), is going to find a way to do it for you!

Replacing yourself — making yourself dispensable in your current role via the use of technology or more efficient process — not only helps your organization improve, but also allows you to be redeployed for other work, making you an asset more indispensable than ever.

To be truly indispensable, make yourself dispensable…

How to make yourself indispensable

In today’s outsourcing, downsizing, volatile economy, people are more worried than ever about losing their job, no matter the position they hold.

Here is one way to make it less likely you will lose your job and even if you do, this practice will greatly help you move on to your next job or a freelance career.

The late, great personal development expert, Zig Zigular , famously said You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.”

How to make yourself indispensableToo often, we find ourselves living in the world of ME, with constant thoughts of how is this going to help ME, what have they done for ME, and I need to cover my ass so it doesn’t affect ME.

Well, I am here to tell you, you are not as important as you want to believe. So, stop worrying about ME and focus on how you can help others.

By shifting your thoughts and subsequent actions to always look for a way to help others, you start making yourself indispensable. You can even learn a great deal along the way.

By constantly helping those above you get what they want, they will directly see the value you offer and become an advocate for you, potentially defending your position when the next downsizing rotation comes around. You are providing them support in order to earn your way up. This is fine because you are earning it!

Think of everything you do for others as an investment in your personal development. Clear a path for those above you to create an eventual path for yourself.

How to Help

How to make yourself indispensableHow you help will be unique to your relationship with the people above you in the organization, but I am not talking about getting their coffee each morning, although it can’t hurt to do so from time to time.

Two of the best ways to offer support is to make their stresses go away and make them look good in front of their peers and supervisors.

If their stressors are not obvious, ask them (or their assistant) what keeps them awake at night. You may be surprised what the answer is. Once you know, do whatever you can to help them alleviate that stress.

For example, you may think giving a presentation on the latest project update that isn’t going so well may be their biggest stressor but it’s actually coming up with child care as their wife is about to head back to work.

As for making them (and yourself) look good, the best way to do this is to by consistently exceed the expectations of your role. I couldn’t find who first said this quote but I firmly believe, Your success in life will be in direct proportion to what you do after you’ve done what you’re expected to do.”

No matter where you are or what you are doing, no matter what your situation in life or what has happened to you in the past, there are really no limits on what you can accomplish in the future if you just help others get what they want. When you begin to practice the principles, you will find yourself becoming a far more influential and indispensable person with everyone you meet, and everywhere you go.

Action: The next time you’re in a meeting, focus on discerning the other person’s needs rather than your own.

Shawn Stratton is an international leadership and team building consultant, professional speaker, bestselling author and Ironman competitor.

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