Have you ever had a person in your life that you valued?
We all have people like that in our lives; people that just make us feel good about ourselves while we are around them. These people leave us feeling better simply for having met up with them — they are VALUABLE.
Now, put yourself in a business owner’s shoes.
What type of person does a business owner value? Who would you value? Would you hire people who light up a room when they walk IN or people who light up a room when they walk OUT?
Doesn’t it make sense that we would want to be in the first group? We want people to like us, like being with us, and like us working for them.
Here are five simple ways to become a very valuable employee to get you started:
1 — Adopt a Confident and Positive Attitude
Smile even when you don’t feel like it because that’s what makes the difference. Speak positive thoughts to yourself, and THINK positive thoughts as well — especially when you don’t feel like it.
Your mind may not believe the positive thoughts you’re feeding it at first, but if you stick with it, you will eventually begin to believe it. When that happens, you will naturally have a more confident posture.
Additionally, hold your head up high and walk with positive posture! You are something to be proud of!
Doing these things will help you gain more confidence in the long-run and even the short-run.
2 — Make Sure You are Proud of Your Work
If you aren’t proud of your work, then you didn’t put 100% of your effort into it. Do not just complete an assignment just to say you did it! Be sure you are pouring solid, concentrated effort into whatever you are working on!
Reread it, look it over a third or fourth time, do whatever is necessary to make sure your work is high quality. Your work will eventually rise above those who settle for mediocrity. However, do not take twice as long to do your work. Ship on time, put 100% of your effort into whatever you do, and your work ethic will be noted.
3 — Be Honest
This one quality alone will set you apart from so many people.
Think about it — how many people these days are completely honest? Sadly, not that many. So, when the project is going to take three weeks to complete, don’t say it’s only going to take one week. When you are the last one at the office after a hard day’s work, don’t grab a box of paper clips to take home with you.
It’s the little things that make all the difference, and this includes telling the truth. Telling the truth is a lot easier than trying to keep up with the lies in the long-run, anyway.
4 — Be Flexible
Don’t be a raw spaghetti noodle — the kind of person who snaps in half when change is mentioned. Try very hard to address all problems that have to do with a change in plans with a smile and some patience.
It may not be easy, but it’s well worth it! Start with the small things and work your way up: is it really the end of the world when they have to change the meeting time from 1 PM to 4 PM? Be flexible.
Flexible people are so much more valuable; however, this goes both ways! While it’s good to be flexible, Don’t be a cooked spaghetti noodle either — the kind of person who bends over backward to please everybody.
When your boss asks you to complete a project in one week when you know that it is virtually impossible (and you’re not just being lazy), then be honest and gently let them know that the request is unreasonable. In short, be flexible enough to roll with the punches, but stiff enough so that people don’t walk all over you!
5 — Make Other People Feel Important
This one is probably the most impactful, and it’s the easiest thing of all to do! Why don’t more people do it? Because it’s also super easy not to do.
In Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, he says to pretend that everyone has a sign posted on their forehead saying, “Make me feel important!” Honestly, most people think about themselves most of the time, so when you acknowledge them, it lifts them up (and brightens your day too!). Here are some ways you can make people feel important:
1. Smile — a real, genuine smile.
2. Listen to them for REAL. Be genuinely interested in what they have to say — Let them do all the talking.
3. Encourage them! Compliment them on clothing, work ethic, services they provide, etc. The possibilities are endless!
4. Perform random acts of kindness.
5. Be respectful of other people.
Obviously, try not to come across as creepy. That goes without saying.
Actually, this is how you should treat everybody, not just the people you work for or the people you work with. Making other people feel important makes you feel good yourself anyway, so why not try it?
Although this list seems rather extensive, it’s actually rather short. There are so many more ways to make people feel important and become a more valuable employee, and I would encourage you to read How to Win Friends and Influence People for more information.
In the meantime, work on applying the simple steps above! I think you’ll find work a lot more fun if you do.