How can you be indispensable at work? The best thing you can do to help you get a new job is to make yourself indispensable at your current position. It doesn’t matter if you have a full-time job now.
How can you make yourself indispensable at work?
Whether you’re employed in a traditional position, serving as a temporary worker or even volunteering while seeking your next full-time gig, keep the following tips in mind to inspire people to consider you an amazing colleague:
Show initiative. It’s no surprise that this tops the list. We all prefer to work with people who raise their hands to offer to pitch in. Don’t spend key meetings looking around the room hoping someone else will take on the new project. When you step up to the plate and take on additional responsibilities, you’ll gain favor with bosses and colleagues and win a chance to enhance your credentials.
Admit when you make a mistake. Isn’t it refreshing when someone says, “I made a mistake; let me fix it?” Unfortunately, many people in the workplace prefer to pass blame along or lay low until everyone forgets about the problem. Those who try to pass the buck risk being the victim of workplace gossip that could prevent them from getting a new job down the road. Of course, ideally, you won’t make a lot of mistakes that you’ll need to admit, but you can win points in many cases by taking responsibility and making a point to correct the situation.
Learn new things. If you’ve been at the job for many years, but haven’t made a point to continue your education and attend conferences and trainings, you probably are falling behind your less experienced colleagues. When you want a new job or it’s time to start a business, you’ll be missing mandatory skills. The best employees always seek opportunities to learn new things, even when they’re otherwise occupied keeping up with the day-to-day tasks. It’s a challenge, but it makes a difference between a good employee and a great one.
Do what you say you will do. Do you follow through and complete promised projects? We all have had colleagues who raise their hand at meetings, but spend the rest of the week avoiding the work they agreed to do. Don’t be that person.
Share credit. Rarely do we accomplish big projects at work without someone else’s help. Colleagues who share credit when credit is due generally have better rapport than their more selfish colleagues. Nice guys really can finish first, so look for ways to share the glory.
Know what battles to pick. It’s a rare person who always likes every decision that higher-ups make that affects his or her job. Usually, there’s plenty to disagree about, and lots of big and small battles to wage at work. Successful employees make it a point to keep quiet and not complain until it really matters. If you’re the employee who is generally agreeable, it is much more likely that someone will take notice if you have a major concern or complaint. Like the boy who cried wolf, if you’re always railing against the rules, most people will stop listening.
Be ready for work. If you need to spend the first hour of your day checking social media and updating your status on Facebook, do that before you get into the office. You need to be ready for work when you get there. You harm your reputation when you don’t start your day along with everyone else.
Do the work. It sounds easy, right? Just get the work done. However, it’s not always so obvious to everyone that getting the work done is half the battle. Amazing employees find a way to get the work done, even when it means sometimes putting aside their own pet projects or favorite things in order to accomplish a big goal.
photo by quinn.anya