Published by Matthew Gustin
6 months ago
Many everyday situations in the business world can make you sweat, especially when it comes to the safety of your workplace. Perhaps you have just learned that some employees have to be terminated, and now you are worried about your professional career.
Most people think that it’s their position that determines their fates in a company. But let me say you this: Just because you do not occupy a leadership position, it doesn’t mean that you have less power than the ones above you. Your position doesn’t say anything.
Even though it might seem like they have everything in control, your superiors are just humans like you. If you are trying to look good in front of your boss by doing more things better than him or her, you’re making a big mistake. Some bosses are jealous or filled with insecurities. Fearing for their own position, they will just fire you.
I know, you are asking yourself now if you should do poor work: Not at all! Do the best you can do, but always make you superiors earn the credits and avoid jumping into the spotlight. This way you’ll win your boss’ appreciation and you’ll certainly ease his or her fears of being replaced.
This little trick, is maybe one of the most powerful there are. If you master it, you can become someone your company can never get rid of. But how does it work?
I remember the first episode of Suits, an American legal drama television series. In this episode you get to see this powerful move in action. Mike, a college dropout, gets hired by Harvey, a senior associate in Pearson Hardman, a law firm. The problem is, Mike never got a degree in Harvard’s Law School and Pearson Hardman has a strict rule, to only hire full pledged lawyers that studied in Harvard. Later Harvey gets in trouble and has to fire Mike. But Mike gets around this, by just making Harvey’s career dependent on him. Mike tells Harvey that if he get’s fired he’ll denounce him for hiring him, even though he knew he doesn’t have a degree.
Of course, making someone dependent on you doesn’t always have to be that critical. A good way to make yourself indispensable is to either develop exceptional and unique skills in a specific domain, so that you become a rare kind of professional. The other thing you can do, is to get involved in so many important fields, projects or processes of your company, so that firing you would be no option anymore. Your involvement would become your greatest asset.
But if you can choose, always choose the first option. One that has unique skills can become indispensable in any other company right away. Your skills don’t just disappear over night. But if you get to change the company and your trump card is solely your involvement, you might get fired before you get involved enough in the new company.
Use the rules of supply and demand. The more you are seen, the less worth is your presence. Learn to be present on crucial moments and make an impact. If you are always present, people won’t learn to miss or respect you being there. When I was younger, my mother always told me one thing: People won’t remember you for being there with them in good times, show up and support them when it matters most, and they will remember you and talk good about you.
It takes courage to act upon and carry other people’s weight when things are difficult. Of course, you don’t have always to show up in bad times, just for the sake of being there. Show up and make a difference otherwise your showing up in crucial moments won’t be of use. When you show up and things start to change for the good, people will know, it was you.
Live up to your reputation or at least build yourself one and never let it falter. Your reputation influences they way people perceive you. You don’t believe me?
I came across these two pictures:
On the left side you can see Kim Kardashian and on the right side Beyoncé. These pictures are circulating in the web and the most interesting thing about them is, while most people are acting derogatory towards Kim’s picture, everyone is in love with Beyoncé’s picture. Some people are telling me is because Kim is showing her butt. But be honest right now, if Beyoncé was to strike the same pose as Kim, do you think the internet would react as negative as they did with Kim? Of course not! And the reason is that Beyoncé is being perceived differently than Kim, because of her reputation.