Skip to main content

Make Yourself Indispensable

November 29, 2020

How would you describe a worker who can step up to any challenge, task, or role, and have a significant impact no matter what the assignment? In his book “Linchpins,” author, entrepreneur Seth Godin labels this type of employee indispensable. These superheroes of the workplace perform with a mindset that drives them to think and act differently, go above and beyond what is expected of them, and perform well under pressure. Learn how to become an outstanding staff member who by attending the December 8 How to Make Yourself Indispensable virtual workshop from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

“Being indispensable is a philosophy and skillset that allows staff to be successful in any position, regardless of the specialized knowledge and skills they need for their jobs,” says Bryant Kuehner, workshop facilitator.

“Characteristics include resilience, adaptability, ambition, and team orientation – all things that can make staff members stand out and afford them new opportunities in the future,” he says.

In this workshop, Kuehner, Training and Development Consultant, Talent Development, will lead participants through a series of activities that illustrate the following indispensable employee traits:

  • Taking ownership of your responsibilities. Think of your current role and consider how you can use the characteristics and behaviors of an effective business owner to do your job well. For example, owners solve problems. Don’t wait for your manager to solve your problem. Address root causes, research solutions, assess the options, and then present the best choices to your manager.
  • Going above and beyond. Expand your sphere of influence by working with new connections in other departments or looking for processes that can be improved even if they’re going well. Take initiative by taking on a project that scares you and do it anyway. Come up with an out-of-the box idea that could bring value to the organization.
  • Performing well under pressure instead of caving. Keep calm by accepting and coping with your stress so that you can focus on a desired outcome. Also, perform triage to help determine the most critical issues and a plan of action, which may include delegating or requesting assistance.
  • Adapting to changing circumstances. Change is hard but flexing your intellectual muscle can make it easier. Increase your adaptability by doing at least one new or different thing each week or talking with people with opinions different from yours.
  • Being a team player. Be someone others want to work with. Be pleasant, positive and reliable. Help others perform better by using “power messages” that include words of encouragement, questions to prompt thinking, and calls to action.
  • Being replaceable. We usually think of irreplaceable as being a positive quality, but irreplaceable employees are locked into a role because they hoard their knowledge, becoming the only ones who can do their job. Kuehner says, “this is bad not just for teams, but for individuals as well.” You want to be replaceable; someone who shares their expertise and delivers impact wherever they are.

Kuehner also says that though remote work has changed the way we engage with one another you can still become indispensable.

“These qualities are precisely the ones that are conducive to success in the unpredictable era of COVID and remote work. For example, going above and beyond and taking ownership provides the motivation to experiment with new ideas for accomplishing tasks during remote work,” he says.

Register today for the How to Make Yourself Indispensable virtual workshop and set yourself up for success in whatever role you take on.

For more professional development programs, visit the Learn & Grow section of the Human Resources website.