You know who they are. It’s that group of tenured and embedded employees that keep the company moving operationally. These aren’t the visionaries and they wouldn’t necessarily be linked with taking the company to next level. But this group of people understand the current business inside-and-out. They know the products. They know the customers. They know the company processes. They know the company systems.
This group of people elicit conflicting opinions from management. They are often criticized for being single points of failure and unwilling to share their knowledge area. Some have even labeled them grumpy (aren’t we all at times?). But yet, this is the group that many have also labeled as indispensable. I’ve heard quotes like, “We would be in big trouble if <insert name> were not here” and “If <insert name> leaves the company then we’ll go down”. They are considered necessary for the health and well being of the company.
But what’s the real value with the indispensable?
The real value with the indispensable employee is not the knowledge in their head. That can be replaced, in time, with others. Knowledge of key systems is not a gift that others can’t obtain. The real value is that this group of employees chooses to care enough about their job to completely immerse themselves into it. They understand how processes and equipment connect products and services to people. They don’t box themselves into a job description. They don’t see their time spent at work as merely a job. These people see the work day as an opportunity to satisfy their passion and to make their art. Others see it too. That’s why they become the “go to” employees.
Think about it. This group of people don’t complain about salaries, job descriptions, or office politics. They are more concerned with output and keeping the operations of the company moving. The indispensable employees are problem solvers. They don’t count effort by hours, rather they see results as the goal and are willing to do the work.
Being indispensable is not an individual person or group of people. Indispensable is a set of actions and attitudes.
Who wants it?
Make it happen. Get started everyday. Find that the goal is more important than set rules and frameworks. Be willing to immerse and embed within the business. Become indispensable through positivity, immersion, and service.