How to keep your job when others are losing theirs

Last week, we discussed networking as one of the best ways to seek out new job opportunities when either you or fate has decided that it’s time to move on. This week, we will discuss the ultimate job strategy during tough times – keeping the one you have! 

Societal work place norms have changed; work place integrity has degraded to the point where things that were common character traits - not having excessive absences and arriving timely - are now rare. 

It always amuses me when I ask prospective job seekers what makes them good candidates for an opening and they respond with something like, “I have a professional attitude, I work hard, and I get along with others.” Sound familiar? And while I can’t argue that each point is good, each one is also expected of any employee to whom a paycheck is provided! 

When the economy gets tough, but even in good times, it is not enough to be considered a good employee.  You should want to be an excellent employee to stand apart from the “good” employees, amongst which layoff decisions will be made.  Below we have provided a few tips to raise you from good to excellent status.

Refuse to be the good employee.  Be better.  Truthfully, today’s good employees are usually average.  They do what they are told, don’t cause any waves, and complete their assigned tasks.  The excellent employees are passionate, going above and beyond the minimum standard.  They reject complacency and anything “good enough” is unacceptable. 

Speak to problems.  Good employees speak about problems and can quickly point out all the things that are wrong with a company, department or project. More often than not, they bring down the morale and excitement of others with negativity. They are not wrong in identifying the problem, but that’s where they stop; and so does their usefulness.

On the other hand, excellent employees speak to problems and provide unique and creative ways to overcome them. They never stop at what’s wrong; they move to the excellent level of providing solutions and taking a lead role in implementing those solutions. 

Seek what others avoid.  Good employees avoid conflict.  They see conflict as destructive only.  Excellent employees harness the energy of conflict into a positive productive force that leads to creativity, better solutions to issues, and better understanding between people and teams.

Excellent employees are highly valued because of what they add to an organization: strong skills, new ideas, initiative, leadership, and loyalty.  Consciously develop these traits in yourself, wield them usefully and consistently in your organization, and you will become the employee your company cannot live without!

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3 Responses to “How to keep your job when others are losing theirs”

  1. fakhir says:

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