How do you become indispensable in a world of disposable employees? Well, that's hard to do and it may not be your desire. You may be looking for another job even as you're reading this. Perhaps you've just been "dialing it in" for the past two years and you're ready for a change. Well, okay, but how about thinking differently for the next role?
What if you could be seen as a font of information? What if you took your position so seriously that those around you saw you as the expert? What if your boss viewed you as a critical, healthy member of the staff? It's possible for this to be the case and for it to be genuine.
In the past, some of you may have experienced a job where you were too much the "everything." No one would make a move without checking with you, and then once the move was made, they would come back to you to see if it was done correctly. You really were the first, the last...the everything. The thought of taking PTO would almost not be an option because your cell phone would ring all day anyway. That is not the healthiest position to be in. There is a better way.
Becoming the expert in your responsibilities is your job. You've got to take a view of your position that it is yours. The onus is on you. Take that job and make it yours through your diligent effort to know all that you need to and how to implement it effectively. You should be performing at the highest level.
And what you should also consider is equipping others to be ready to do the same. Teach those under you to make confident decisions and to be ready with the knowledge needed for success. Create an atmosphere of excellence. The perspective is not do this so that you will be seen as the office suck-up; move beyond the politics and status quo of your organization. Understand that you've been hired to bring this kind of excellence. Just because there may be some who do not subscribe to this point of view, do not allow that to thwart your power and drive.
By allowing your department to function at a higher level of achievement, you will be seen not as the only point of information, but as a leader of information. Those in your department will share the burden of being excellent, which is much easier to handle with many hands!
And for those of you who really are standing with one foot out the door, perhaps approaching your work this way will change your disposition. That doesn't mean that you won't move on to another opportunity, but rather, that you will approach it as someone with a strong work ethic and high desire for excellence. Wouldn't it be fantastic if your current employer could recommend you to another role because of the leader you are? What if the recommendation from your superior read like this: "You're my sun, my moon, my guiding star, my kind of wonderful, that's what you are." Um, well, maybe not quite like this, but you get the idea.