The headlines, newscasters, talk shows, friends, relatives, and even strangers are all talking about the problems with today’s economy.
Whether it’s the loss of a home or the slow dwindling of investment accounts, everyone is talking about the affects this economy is having on their lives.
In recent days, the hottest topic of discussion regarding our news breaking economy has been more about jobs – layoffs in particular.
The American unemployment rate has reached an all-time high of 8.1%, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. With so many people losing their jobs, it makes those who have one grateful that they can still pay their bills, keep food on their tables, and keep a roof over their heads.
The rapid increase of job layoffs and employment uncertainties has employees wondering what they can do to keep their jobs and avoid the unemployment lines; what they can do to make themselves stand out from the rest; and what they can do to make themselves indispensable.
Many experts have said that now is the time for employees to take stock of their skills, invest in improving their skills, and begin in earnest to fully use their skills in order to become indispensable.
With that in mind, to survive and thrive in this current employment environment, today’s employees must focus on developing the three significant characteristics of efficient, proficient, and self-sufficient to make themselves a more valuable asset, not only to their companies, but for their families and themselves, as well.
Let’s look at the first characteristic of efficiency. Efficient employees are those who are productive without waste. They are able to work smart by producing desired results without wasting their vital resources of time and energy.
When you operate as an efficient employee, you are able to put forth effort in your work day, whether you work 8, 9, or 12 hours, and get much done with few mistakes. Since you understand that mistakes can cost time and money plus hinder a positive working relationship with clients and customers, you, as an efficient employee, will focus on having a mastery of organizational and time management skills to boost your ability of consistently producing without waste.
The next characteristic today’s employees must develop is that of proficiency. A proficient employee is an employee that has great knowledge and experience in a trade or profession.
In today’s economic climate, not only are there more and more people losing their jobs, but there also seems to be more and more people doing a job that they don’t know much about doing.
Have you experienced interacting with someone regarding an aspect of their job that you thought they would know but they did not know much about it at all? Perhaps they transferred you to someone else, or maybe they flat out told you they did not know anything about what you were asking, or possibly they gave you some information only for you to find out later that the information was totally incorrect and did not help you with what you needed help fixing or resolving.
Employees who do not know their jobs well cannot do their jobs well. That is why it is important for you to learn every aspect of your job and learn it properly. The more you know, the further you will go. The success of your job will depend on the knowledge and skills you possess. Therefore, take classes, enroll in certification programs, study material on your own, and work with a mentor to help position yourself as a proficient employee.
The final characteristic today’s employees must develop is the characteristic of self-sufficiency. With all of the uncertainty that employees face regarding the stability of their jobs, the characteristic of self-sufficiency can serve them well.
Self-sufficient employees are able to maintain themselves without outside aid. Of course, in the workplace, teamwork, which requires you to receive assistance from others, is essential for establishing bonds amongst co-workers, successfully completing projects, and achieving company goals. However, operating as a self-sufficient employee will allow you to demonstrate an extreme confidence in your own ability and worth.
This means, you will operate as a self-starter who performs work that you are proud of. In addition, you will work with minimal instructions from the boss, doing what you know must be done, instead of waiting to be told what you must do. Furthermore, you will understand that you are not an island and you will know the resources that can help you to do a job well done and you will tap into them for assistance.
Valuing your efforts, utilizing your resources, remembering your goals, tapping into your talents, and using your skills will help you to operate as a self-sufficient employee in the workplace.
And, in the unfortunate event you should find yourself facing the unemployment line, your ability to provide for your own needs will help you to establish a career where you can rely on your own knack to produce a living and survive during this employment downturn.
With constant reminders that these are not easy economic times in which we live, focusing on positive aspects of employment may appear a discouraging task. Yet, if you work on strengthening the characteristics of efficient, proficient, and self-sufficient, you will position yourself to survive this – and any future – employment crisis.