I just did a search on LinkedIn for “Web Designer” and there are 447,028 people that come up as a result. Search for something else, “attorney” (815K), “software programmer” (328K), or even “manager” (44 million) and you see quickly that whatever you are, there is heavy and real competition in the labor market.
Whoever you are, there are plenty of people that are like you. And when people are looking this way, you are simply a commodity. The world of talent is at our fingertips.
And many of these jobs are obsolescing because guys like me come along and automate business processes and systems. Many jobs have not been created because of automation. Many will simply not be needed, especially if all you do is move information from one place to another.
If you are not special, then you have to really step back and ask what your stock price is. Your boss, colleagues and clients look at you with a moving stock price on your head. It may not be articulated, but you go up and down in their minds based on a lot of things that you do consistently.
If you want to keep your stock high in the minds of those that matter in your world, then pay attention. Think carefully about your human interactions. Here are things that are practical and can be practiced every day.
- Be gracious. Remember to thank people and show gratitude when they have done something and anything for you they didn’t have to do. The world is filled with ungrateful people.
- Be responsive. If you are inefficient, why? Isn’t your business about moving information? How long are you going to accept your inefficiency? 5 more years? 10 more? Be faster.
- You lead. Stop asking for permission to do something or to spread the responsibility. That’s playing politics. Go make something happen. Recruit others for your project. Have conviction. Don’t wait to be asked. Then share how you won after you did it.
- Make yourself worth more. You get paid what you’re worth. If you’re overlooked, don’t expect the world to stop and come kissing up to you. If you are really worth more to someone in a specific way, they will notice. But you have to ask the question first and then become that attractive and pay the price of being or doing something more.
A few ideas that any person worth their salt can work on. Just think when you are staring at someone, “How do they see me?” It could be a scary question, but it’s what matters.
We’re all attracted to and looking for higher stock.