In business, when all things are equal, we want to do business with people we like. When things aren’t equal, we still want to do business with people we like. The key to success in business is to become someone people like.
There is a similar principle when it comes to employees. When hiring a new employee, and the skills are the same among applicants, we want to hire the one that makes us feel secure in our decision. When there comes a time for downsizing and the skills are the same, we still want to keep the one that makes us feel secure in our decision.
So, whether you are seeking a job or hoping to hold onto one, here are eleven ways to improve your position to gain or keep employment:
- Show a desire to learn. Individuals that understand they are part of something bigger than just their job, display an eagerness to learn all aspects of the business. They know by learning all they can, they will be able to positively impact multiple departments within the company.
- Act as if you are an owner. Regardless of one’s position, everyone’s actions impact the company’s bottom line. Simple acts like turning off lights when rooms aren’t in use, making prudent decisions on expenses and opportunities, can tip the scales in your favor when personnel decisions must be made.
- Seek positive change. Employees that proactively seek to improve systems and eliminate redundancy are worth their weight in gold. Being able to provide suggestions to create positive change without being asked enhances your value and diminishes the possibilities of being laid off.
- Show candor. It’s not easy to have tough conversations. It’s easier to look the other way. It’s easier to say you don’t want to get anyone in trouble. Don’t let this be you. Hiding the truth helps no one overall and could jeopardize the entire company’s existence. Be the one to tell a co-worker his/her actions are unacceptable and must stop. Let the employee know, if the actions aren’t rectified, you will let others know. The goal isn’t to get anyone in trouble. It is to stop the negative behavior before it causes irreputable harm. Putting the company before one individual’s actions provides job security for the many and keeps everyone’s integrity intact.
- Create happiness in the workplace. To stand out from applicants or co-workers, you simply need to take ownership of your happiness. When you realize you can bring out the best in your co-workers and can bring positive energy to your environment, you will stand out as a difference maker. When you can display positive energy during stressful times and share it with others, you will always have a place to work.
- Look for opportunities. It doesn’t matter what your position is, if you look at your role as one for helping a company grow, you’ll be able to spot ways to increase revenues and reduce costs. Employers are always on the lookout for individuals with this mindset. These individuals tend to pay for themselves.
- Set your own high expectations. The best employees are low maintenance. By setting your own high expectations, no one will have to tell you what to do. You won’t need to be reminded to complete tasks. When you begin to expect more from yourself than others expect of you, employment will never be an issue for you.
- Grow yourself. This one is different than the first thing (show a desire to learn) listed above. When you focus on growing yourself, you are taking your future into your own hands. Instead of just learning all aspects of the business, you create new opportunities for yourself by learning completely new skills. You work on personal development and leadership skills. By growing yourself, you are prepared for what comes next in the event your company or industry becomes extinct.
- Be coachable. No one knows everything. Everyone knows something. Be willing to learn from others. In fact, make it a practice to learn something from everyone you meet. When you are willing to learn, you’ll discover many teachers that will help you to shorten your learning curves and lift you to success beyond your wildest dreams.
- Facilitate your boss. Across all businesses, across all industries, nothing generates a pay raise or a promotion faster than making your supervisor’s job easier. This one is an easy decision. If your boss can only keep one employee, which one do you think gets picked? The one that helps the boss the most! Every time you can take a task away from your supervisor you are doing two things. First, you’re eliminating a little stress from your supervisor. Secondly, you are demonstrating your abilities to move up in the company.
- Grow others. When you lead by example, showing others the right way to do things, and inspiring them along the way, decision-makers will take notice. Not only will you be demonstrating your readiness for a leadership role, but when it is presented, your co-workers will applaud your promotion. There will be no animosity or resentment. Only appreciation and respect.
Remember, there is greatness within you. You must choose greatness. It won’t develop on its own. I believe in you!
“If you wait for someone to help you, what happens if they don’t show up?”
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Published by Bryan M. Balch, Results Coach
Helping Individuals and Businesses Achieve Desired Results
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