CAREER DEVELOPMENT / JUL. 25, 2014
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Outside of the Box Tactics to Become Indispensable at Work - Part 2

If you just finished "Outside of the Box Tactics to Become Indispensable at Work - Part 2", I’m sure you’re ready for the final piece of the indispensability puzzle.

And you should be — the tactics below are gold nuggets of knowledge passed down from the most indispensable people who ever lived.

Be a Giver (Never Leech)

Constantly give the gift of hard, extra-mile, superior quality work to your company — and help your friends succeed as much as possible. Be careful to observe your motivation levels so you don’t become lazy and unproductive. Helpers get appreciation, leeches get canned. 

Save a Horse, Ride a Star

Norman Peale wrote, "Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars." Consider the vehicle you’ve chosen for your journey to indispensability. Perform an indispensability vehicle audit.

That got confusing quick — what I mean is this. Make a list of the things you do to become indispensable. Those are your vehicles. Make sure each and every one of them is a star — or at least a moon. now you have a clearer picture of how to navigate to your goal.

Evolve Your Communication

People who can’t communicate well stay at the bottom. It’s sad because a lot of people could be absolute powerhouses, but they aren’t — because of failure to communicate effectively. It takes confidence and practice. Make time to read books on communicating effectively, attend workshops, or take a class. It takes an investment of time and effort, and you won’t be able to harvest the dividends until you’ve learned a lot and put it into practice. But that’s what makes this indispensability tactic so indispensable. Not many people in today’s microwave, instant gratification culture are willing to make that kind of investment without seeing immediate results. So you’re blessed with a monopolistic strategy.

Fight Dirty(er)

This piece of advice is for the soft spoken, gentle people, who never get heard because they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Step on toes. On purpose. Tough love is still love, and if you have a brilliant plan that you can’t get out because you don’t interrupt, holler and demand attention, it’s time to take a step — right on the toes of the testosterone-brimming attention hoarders. You’ll find it’s even easier than you thought, because when you make the point to raise your voice to be heard, interrupting the unproductive clamor of the hoarders, it’ll quickly be heard. People who don’t assert themselves often get quicker responses when they do, because it’s rare and special and somewhat of a shock.

Create a Masterpiece

Seth Godin says that regarding work, most people have a poverty mindset: "If I give you something, it costs me what I gave you. The more you have, the less I have. The more I share, the more I lose." About creating a masterpiece he says, "work is a chance to do art. Good art is useless and banal. No one crosses the street to buy good art, or becomes loyal to a good artist." 

Your work should be treated not as a monetary means to an end, but as an art. And not just good art — a masterpiece. Even if you get paid less for a project short term (as the more time you spend on a project, the less money you make per hour), that masterpiece will create exponential results long-term, as the word of your masterpiece gets out. The more you give the more you receive. It’s always worked that way and always will.

Gather Many Eggs in Many Baskets

The hardest part about becoming indispensable is that it’s not possible. No one is ever truly indispensable. So why waste your time trying? I’ll tell you why.

Have you heard the tale of the goose that laid gold eggs?

Imagine you had one of those. It lays a 24-carat egg every day, about the size of a dime. Awesome. Problem is, there’s other magical freaks of nature offering the same skill. It may take nothing more than a poorly placed dropping to inspire a drive to the pet store for a replacement.

But what if that goose pushed out a bigger nugget every week?

The larger that chunk of poorly digested metal is, the less likely you are to get rid of him.

Before long, he can molt, peck, scratch, poo and quack wherever he pleases because of how indispensable he’s become.

He’s never truly indispensable, but the bigger that egg is, the closer he gets. And the better his life is as a result.

The same of course goes for you. All of the tactics and tips mentioned above — those are your golden eggs.

Make them bigger and produce as many as possible. And diversify your portfolio. Keep tangible records of the gold you’ve produced for your company on LinkedIn, your resume, and in the minds of people who would recommend you in the future. 

When your indispensability is clear not only to your boss, but to other bosses at other companies as well — that’s when you really reap the benefits. 

There’s no better job security or ladder-climbing potential than that.

Think macro, but take actions on a micro-level. You can only eat an elephant one bite at a time.

 

 

Notes

Image Source: Outside the Box

Napoleon Hill quote: Think and Grow Rich

Linchpin Resources: Seth Godin

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