We all want job security, but in 2015 it can be pretty hard thing to come by. Of course, no one is totally indispensable; the reality is that we can all be replaced. We all know this. However, there are certain things that you can do to achieve near-indispensability, which should provide that feeling of safety we all crave. Here are some ideas for making yourself essential.
Imagine penciling "manicure" between "conference call" and "team meeting" on your to-do list, and letting your boss deal with cleaning your house. Or, if whimsy is your thing, think about what it would be like to rent a kitten for your cubicle, or get unlimited free Snickers for the rest of your career. At some companies, perks like these aren't just the stuff of daydreams – they're employees' real-life, workaday experience.
Bad habits can be tough to break, but some are worth the effort. There are a few bad habits that could be causing you real professional harm without you even being aware of them. The first step is always identifying that there is a problem to solve. Let's take a look at a few of these career-killing habits and think about how to break them once and for all.
You know the deal. You're hired to do a job. That job comes with a job description or maybe even a contract that lists the responsibilities and duties assigned to you as said job holder. Next, you start to get comfortable with your new position. Soon, you're doing well, and before you know it, you start winning the respect of your co-workers and even your bosses. You're starting to feel pretty good about yourself, and this job – and that's usually right around the time when things start to change.
For the northern regions of this country, summer is an especially sacred time: by April, 50-degree weather is impetus for shorts and a t-shirt, whereas Los Angeles folks are still bundled up in the low-to-mid 70s. That said, when summer heat rolls around, it can be especially tempting to take advantage of those fashion mistakes that society will justify in July. If you're an employee of HP, however, they just became much more than a simple faux pas.
The old adage of "don't ask, don't get" is usually true when it comes to promotions and raises. If you don't let your manager know about your career goals, it's much less likely that you'll get to where you want to be. That said, workers often ask for promotions without stopping to consider if they're ready for them, or even if they've earned them. If you want to impress your boss and move up the corporate ladder, what you do is just as important as what you say. Here's how you can show your manager that you're ready – without ever saying a word.
Even if you've never played Dungeons & Dragons or ever heard of the Society for Creative Anachronism, there's one role-playing game that might appeal to you – especially if you spend your days in an office. BLARPing, or Business Live Action Role-Playing, allows office workers to become something more interesting than their usual workaday roles. Just what you need when the real world of TPS reports and year-end reviews gets too dull to take.
Imagine a work world in which the PowerPoint presentation for your weekly team meeting was projected from a vintage carousel horse, a midday snack meant plucking an orange from an indoor grove near your desk, or your daily commute required traveling 100 feet underground to a former nuclear war bunker submerged beneath a mountain via tunnel. For workers employed by the companies that made our list of five of the world's most ogle-worthy offices, these seeming fantasies are actual realities of a typical day at the office.
When we think of office gossip, a lot of bad associations come to mind. The popular idea is that this kind of chatter is counter-productive, harmful, hurtful, and just plain bad. But, there is another side to office chit-chat. It turns out that gossip might not actually be entirely, innately, negative. Here are a few reasons why office gossip might be not only impossible to eliminate but also potentially beneficial.
One of the trickiest and most annoying things you'll have to deal with in your career is office drama. One app aims to combat office politics by creating a "safe place" for co-workers to discuss work matters openly and honestly with one another, all while remaining anonymous. Read on to learn more (and where you can sign up).
We've all heard the myth of the "career pause" – it's used as an excuse when bosses decide not to hire young women. To explain it in the simplest terms, it's the idea that a woman will plan to take time off from her career to raise a family, in some modern iteration of the cult of domesticity. After all, bosses (and journalists) claim, young women will just get pregnant, and go on leave. Then, they'll stay home, need a flex-schedule, choose a lesser job, or in other ways divert from what could be considered a standard career path.
A lot of people use the word "manager" as a part of their job title or description, but "leaders" don't get that label simply by being appointed to a post. Leadership is earned, and is hard-won, by the folks who prioritize and understand the traits and qualities that come with the unofficial title.