Blog by Tracy Stock, CSP
Organizations need talented individuals who consistently bring value to the organization and to its customers. The more value you bring with you to your job, the more valuable and indispensable you will be viewed by your employer. Not only will you command a higher salary, but you will likely be considered for new opportunities far more than others.
Please don’t mistake indispensable for irreplaceable—because they are not the same thing. As it’s said, everyone can be replaced. But to be indispensable means that you are so good and efficient at your job, that your boss and co-workers don’t want to imagine replacing you. You are the go-to person they count on; the one who simply gets things done. So how can you gauge your level of value?
Consider asking yourself these seven questions and reflect on your answers honestly. Do you have numerous favorable responses or does the self-assessment demonstrate a less-than-positive picture?
- Does my work and results exceed expectations?
- Am I learning, growing and improving every year?
- Am I spending most of my time at work with top performers, emotionally intelligent individuals and those who are upbeat and positive?
- Have I recently added to my job description on my own initiative?
- Do I set and achieve goals for myself beyond those my supervisor appoints?
- Do I regularly ask for feedback on my performance from my boss, peers and direct reports (if applicable)?
- Do I collaborate well with others and have good professional relationships?
In addition to the value you bring to your job, have you considered the value or worth you place on yourself personally?
Consider this scenario: If I offered you $20, would you take it? What if I crumpled it up? Stepped on it? You’d probably still take it, right? And do you know why? Because it’s still $20; it’s worth hasn’t changed. The same goes for you. Your worth doesn’t change because someone crumpled you up or stepped on you. You are still just as valuable as you were before.
In times of uncertainty—clearly like those we continue to be in—self-reflection occurs often. Looking at ourselves in the mirror sometimes brings worry, anxiety and even fear. These negative feelings occur because of the unknown and the feeling of a loss of control. The good news, is that we all have some control, and focusing time, attention and energy on those things within our control is a positive choice. Did the answers to the seven questions above reflect optimism or cynicism? Someone who thrives on learning and growing or simply being complacent? A determined achiever or an unaccountable quitter?
All of the above attributes are choices—not talents—and all of them are available to you without paying $20. And what makes you indispensable isn’t usually a certain set of skills or experiences…it’s you. It’s your personality, work ethic, self-discipline, perseverance, flexibility, resilience, optimism, happiness, level of self-worth, etc. Choose to dream more, learn more, achieve more and you will become more.