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 ..
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