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?
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.
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.