How to Make Yourself Indispensable: 6 Tips to Get You Started
You make sure the basics are covered — you do a good job, you show up to work on time, and you make sure you get your tasks done on schedule. Why doesn’t it feel like enough? Because it’s not! To be really valued, you have to be indispensable. Here’s how:
Knowledge: Know Your Job, Know Your Industry, Know Your Clients.
Of course it’s vital to know the ins and outs of your own job, but don’t stop there! The more you know — about your organization, about your industry, about your clients, about the way your work relates to the work of other departments — the better. Not only will it make you a valuable asset in your current situation, it’ll give you an extra edge in switching positions.
Attitude: Never Underestimate the Power of Positivity.
You don’t have to go around the office singing, but if you do your best to be upbeat — it’ll show. Be excited about change and the chance to work on different projects. Your supervisors will notice — and they’ll appreciate it.
Variety: The More You Know, the Further You’ll Go!
Volunteer to work on a variety of projects — not only will it show that you’re interested in the company, it’ll give you new skills, build working relationships with different people, and showcase you in a positive light. And by being involved in a lot of different projects, it reduces the risk that the elimination of one will have a dramatic impact on your situation.
Niche Work: Be the Expert at Something.
Knowing everything about one particular area and being the go-to person can make you extra valuable, and somebody nobody wants to lose! You don’t want to put all your eggs in one basket, but adding this sort of expertise to your regular great job performance can give you a solid edge.
Visibility: Get Noticed and Appreciated!
Become the primary contact for your department or team — the one who is always willing to help others understand what you do and why you do it. Volunteer to represent your team in meetings, in cross-training, and on group projects. You’ll have increased visibility in the organization and make a strong name for yourself.
Invest in Yourself: Never Stop Learning — Never Stop Growing!
Your career is important — and you need to keep your skills sharp. Stay on the lookout for ways to improve. Subscribe to industry newsletters and publications. Keep yourself educated on how the world is changing; learn new pieces of software; discover better, faster ways to do things — and implement them!
Sometimes the above dowes not matter. There are "other" things that make someone a priority over oneself.
Being an 'expert' can lock you into one continuous task day after day. If that's what you like, go for it. A little variety can help, too. If the variety doesn't happen, then get to know the right people. I am all for the Dale Carnegie course technique. It's not 'what' you know, it's also 'who' you know. Go outside your boundaries on your own and go for this training or college courses.
To Sheryl, I recommend finding someone in your organization with the speaking/presentation skills you would like to achieve and ask that person to be your mentor for a few months. That person will be able to give you practical advice that pertains to your business and industry, plus be able to give you feedback that you can actually use.
To Sheryl, I recommend that you look into Toastmasters to help with public speaking. It helped me a lot. Go to www.totastmasters.org for more info and to find a club near you.
To Sheryl: I recommend practice! Try a Dale Carnegie course or join your local Toastmaster club. Also, if you participate in clubs or volunteering after work, take on some projects there as well. Usually, the groups you'll be talking to are informal and small. A great place to get more comfortable speaking in front of a crowd.
I have tried to do all that is listed above, and for the most part it works. From my experiences there is always that person who one works with that takes the knowledge and attempts to take over your project/job and get the credit. Sharing the general idea works, but keeping some important small details to yourself until needed also helps stop the other person from stepping all over you.
How do you access all the information in your career corner. thanks Irene
These are some very great tips.
Thank you for the article. I agree with Faye. Knowledge is only helpful when shared. Teaching others builds relationships and is in the best interest of the organization.
I'd like to add that when you're being "the expert at something", avoid hoarding knowledge. Doing so actually lessens your value. Be the expert, train others, then become the expert at something new. It shows that you are growing with the organization.
Very helpful and concise tips. I am printing to remind myself and set up as some personal goals. Thanks!!!!
I have printed a copy of the six tips to becoming indispensable and placed them among my goals. These tips are excellent ideas and will benefits me greatly in my continuos efforts to build my career.
Fantastic advice! What advice to you have when you have pretty much done all this and still keep running into a wall???? Time to move on??? Be curious of your answer. Thanks.
Great article! I do see many of these characterisitics in myself, but being reminded that there is always room to grow & do better is key!
Sheryl As an older worker I totally understand what you are saying. I had the same problem most of my life but if you continue to try it will become easier. The more times you see yourself accomplish a difficult task the more confident you will become and it will be easier to put yourself out there. This article is so right on.
This is very good information and already known to me. But what do I do as a person who knows this information but so afraid to put myself out there. I am not shy but scared when it comes to putting myself out there. Such as public speaking. I have tried it and no matter the subject, my voice just shakes everytime. It is disappointing to myself because I want to do it but I am afraid.
This is a great article! Thanks,
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