If you’re uncertain about your job security, it’s hard to relax and do your best work. But one way to make sure that you’re considered a valuable employee is to make yourself indispensable. You don’t do this by killing yourself, but by improving yourself and letting those improvements help you to shine. Here are five ways to make yourself more indispensable at work…
1. Develop in-demand skills that fit well with your other abilities
While your native talents are great, exceptional employees find ways to develop new, complementary skills. For example, a graphic designer might decide to learn web design or programming to further expand his or her abilities. In considering your own situation, think about the duties and abilities of your co-workers—particularly those you interact with frequently. Could you add any of those abilities yourself, thereby making yourself doubly valuable to your employer? If you’re at a loss for other ideas, consider improving your writing ability—given its importance in communication, it’s a highly valued skill in almost any office setting.
2. Be on-time, every time
While casual dress is acceptable in some workplaces, being perpetually late is not. Do not develop a reputation for being tardy with meeting times or deadlines—once you’re tagged with that label, it’s awfully hard to get rid of. No matter how casual the office, your employer will be impressed if you show up to appointments on time and meet (to the best of your ability) the deadlines you agree to. Doing so shows professionalism and reliability, which are both essential to being considered an invaluable employee.
3. Be positive
If you’ve been in the work world for any appreciable amount of time, you’ve surely run into the problem employee. This is the person whose bad attitude and negativity infect the morale of the workplace, because he or she is focused on complaining and criticizing. These people not only suck the enthusiasm out of an office, but they also tend to draw other employees into the negativity vortex as well.
When you’re doing something you like and are good at, your passion shows.
Do not be that person. Employers value enthusiastic, positive team players—the kind of people who can energize a workplace, not bring it down.
4. Learn technology, even if it “isn’t your thing”
Guess what? Whether you like it or not, in today’s world, technology is everyone’s thing. Whether it’s the ability to send email, use a word processor, find information on the internet, or just use the right printer setting, the modern workplace requires basic technological know-how. If you don’t have that, this is the time to develop it. Soon, it will be a prerequisite to all employment.
5. Identify what you’re good at and what you enjoy
When you’re doing something you like and are good at, your passion shows. Not only do you perform your job with gusto, but you’re motivated to further develop your job skills. As a bonus, your enthusiasm is infectious and can help motivate your co-workers. So determine what you’re good at and enjoy, and find ways to work in that space. This will naturally make you an indispensable employee.
If you’re feeling vulnerable at work or want to ensure a more secure future for yourself, start putting these five ideas into practice to let your talent and abilities shine.