Monday, August 17, 2009

UPDATE: Ways to Keep Your Job

So many people contacted me with great comments regarding my article, "16 Ways to Keep Your Job" that I wanted to take some time to publish their great advice as well. To my LinkedIn connections...thanks for all your help!

Patricia Duarte commented:
Goods tips for not being "THAT" guy or girl - the obnoxious, cantankerous, brown-noser who walks around barefoot and steals other people's lunches! (too funny!) ..... lol

However, if you don't work with weirdo's (or they have already been purged), here are a few other tips:

1. Just keeping busy may not spare you.... focus on how you can make a positive (valuable $) difference in your organization.

2. Don't be a miser focusing solely on your shrunken budget and counting pennies. Instead, think of ways to expand or attract money or resources to your organization... regardless of your job description.

3. Stop complaining. Find the opportunity that exists in whatever situation you are in.

4. Become "that guy or girl" people come to solve problems, or get something done well.

5. Treat everyone around you with the same tone and manner of respect and appreciation you seek in return.

6. Be grateful you have a job with health insurance, and act like it. Work like you know there are any number of people who could do your job as well or better than you do... unless, of course, you're a brain surgeon, a rocket scientist or are saving the planet single handedly... :)

Doug Toftner suggested:
Constantly focus on innovating in your current role. Stagnation can keep you out of the positive limelight with people who can impact your career.
2. No matter how much you dislike, or disagree with aspects of your role or organizations policies or operations, always challenge in a proactive way that reflects positively on you, and your bosses. Come with suggestions, not just complaints.

Steve Horwitz added:
Show up early and leave late. No what is going on in the market place. Read everything and keep good communications between clients, even if the news is not good. They'll appreciate that you're on top of it. Go the extra mile and compliment good work. Don't be excitable but enthusiastic. Keep the skill set sharp. Take classes.

Paul W Thomspon said:
In my profession, it is as simple as showing up and bringing your "A" game every day. Regardless of what is going on personally and how you feel(unless you have something contagious), you need to give 100% every day and not waste time. It is amazing how much time many Mortgage Consultants waste every day on worthless banter, surfing the web, etc.
Chris Saffer got right to the point with:
Those are all good. But if you want to keep your job you must first "Show up"!!

Dan de la Cruz, CMA, CPA added:
Figure how to be hardest one to lose. That means be the best at what you do and be an expert on topics relating to your job. No one wants to lose a valuable resource.

Genie Z. Laborde, PhD had this to say:
"Professional" is a broad term, but professional should include being the kind of person you would like to work with. Setting up at least a minimum level of rapport with each person you interact with all day will go a long way toward keeping you employed. Many of the behaviors you cite are so off-the-chart that I can hardly believe they are real. But at Sprint, I couldn't believe that telephone operators answered calls while chewing their lunch either, so I suppose I have a lot of learn about inappropriate behavior. Setting rapport in an office means you know what you need to accomplish, you listen to your co-workers, and you try to help them, when time and schedules permit. You are not obligated to help them accomplish their goals, but as a fellow human being, it is a good idea. We are reciprocal beings, and teams accomplish more even if they are not part of the official designation. Having a few supporters in your office not only is more efficient, but this attitude may help you retain your job. Research studies on building relationships in the office and my own experiences support this hypothesis.

Ron Bingham commented:
Don't be late
Don't make excuses
Don't be afraid to point out risks to the owners of projects with your recommendations for mitigation (got to cover your own butt or be prepared to take the blame for - of all things - keeping your mouth shut when you shouldn't)
Read the book 'Coping with Difficult People'.

Syed Hassan Tanwir Wasti made the comments:
Apart from your 16 ways there are more to be added. It is all about ownership and sense of belonging.

1. Produce more
Work harder. Work longer hours. Immerse yourself in your profession. Know what your suppliers and your competition are doing. Know everything. Become an invaluable resource to your colleagues.

2. Have a plan and evaluate and change as needed
Numerous times we have seen companies spend hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars on marketing campaigns and at the end of them the company has no idea how to measure effectiveness. In one case I witnessed a company launch a huge branding campaign and at the end of it they wondered where the leads were: not realizing that lead generations and branding are different things.

3. Act like your life depends on every customer: it might

4. Change marketing practices

5. Understand when lead generation is a waste of money
How many companies which occupy the lowest tier of a market are spending only on lead generation activities? One company I know competes with Cisco and has an unrecognizable name in the market. They are focusing exclusively on generating leads. Most of these generated leads won't close because in this economic environment customers need reassurance that smaller companies will be in business going forward. It makes you wonder who is in charge of many organizations and when it became acceptable to not worry about your corporate brand and image.

6. Your customers aren't criminals

7. Change your culture
If you are a company where employees leave at 5:00 PM and don't sign onto their computers and work at night, you need to make changes. This may not apply to the numerous companies funded by taxpayer dollars but for the rest, you need to produce more with less and getting more work done is the answer. Be prepared to let people who don't work hard go after a few warnings. You are doing their coworkers and yourself a favor. Over time, let go of more and more weak producers. If people can't step up production in this financial environment they have themselves to blame.

8. Don't give up on customers
You know what? Customers are spending less but spending hasn't ceased. .

9. Explore social media but have a goal

10. Experiment with new ideas
There are more efficient ways of doing virtually all things. Minimize risk while attacking new markets/segments.

11. Communicate internally
Your employees are likely scared. You may not be able to guarantee their job security but you better have a plan for getting through this mess. Articulate it at least quarterly. Make sure you are responsive and understand and respond to employee concerns.

12. Communicate externally
Would you buy from a company that has ceased marketing and PR? I wouldn't? Ok, We might buy candy or gum from such a company but security software? A firewall? Data center products? I don't think so. If you think the best response to global uncertainty is to become mute you are certainly doomed. Please stop reading here and update your resume.

13. Don't do stupid things
A few companies have stepped up e-mail in these times as it is a low cost way to get the message out. I have seen some companies go from no messages to one message a day and it is often the same message. This sort of behavior will definitely get the companies in question added to spam lists which guarantee all subsequent e-mails will not be seen by anyone.

14. Have a web strategy: it could be your most important one
It is 2009 - the web is about 15 years old and some companies still admit they don't have a web strategy. What exactly are you waiting for - a web stimulus program? Scary stuff.

Richard R. Benn brought up this important issue:
Keep your conduct professional at all times.

And finally, Cari Pirello commented:
Passion. Spirit. Energy. This coupled with the intelligence you must possess and being a totally likable person that others want to work with, and you've got the winning combo. Professionalism, decorum and social graces goes without saying.
Thanks again to everyone who commented and made my original article just that much better!

About Maureen McHale:
Maureen McHale is a Central Florida resident with over 13 years of traditional and internet marketing, public relations and business development experience. Having been employed in various industries from travel to high tech to solar energy her ability to translate her knowledge and skills into various environments makes Maureen McHale a highly successful marketing professional. For more information visit her LinkedIn profile at

No comments: