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What's Your Strategy for Keeping Your Job?

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Be the Go-to, Indispensible Person Who Has Needed Organization Knowledge
Young woman in a white coat holds on to a notebook or file and looks dedicated

Can Your Employer Live Without You?

Curt Pickens

One strategy for keeping your job is to be an essential, even crucial, employee. Never wait to be told what to do. Know what to do. Take on responsibility, even when you're not asked. Position yourself as the empoyee your organization can't live without.

Have significant knowledge about your organization. Position yourself as the go-to person who knows the history of the company, customers, and business. Bring to the table the total company perspective about how various departments and functions interact. You know the goals and the thinking behind decisions.

Kristy Chamberlain, a Baton Rouge, LA HR manager, suggests, “The best thing an employee can do to hang on to a job is to be irreplaceable. Make sure your employer can't replace you for the same or less money, and I don't mean by keeping critical information to yourself. Have skills no one else in the department has. Be the go-to person for fixing the copier, proofreading memos, making spreadsheets, anything (and everything)."

You know the strengths and weaknesses of employees and can head off disasters with this knowledge. You are up-to-date about whom to approach with any questions or concerns.

Based on your knowledge, you bring significant insight into decisions and direction. The valued go-to person shares information and willingly trains other employees despite the fact that this may mean less job security.

Appearances to Avoid: The purveyor of significant, needed organization knowledge needs to take care that he is not seen as a road block, a naysayer, or a negative employee who focuses on what doesn’t work, didn’t work, and won’t work. You’ll want to avoid being viewed as an employee who is not open to new ideas. You need to stay away from the appearance of territoriality or unwillingness to share information.

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