By Brad Driscoll
When you wake up, how motivated are you to impact your workplace?
If you are like most, you wake up, go to work, and perform the same tasks as yesterday…and the day before. You go home, spend time on yourself, wake up, and repeat.
This is often the workplace of today. Many are hired to learn a skill and perform only one specific task. In turn, you are rewarded with a paycheck that equals the value you and your task add to the company.
You begin to find comfort in job security and become accustomed to the stress-free environment. However, over time, we tend to lose motivation to perform only one task and the paycheck becomes less rewarding.
You Can Make An Impact
Do me a favor and think back on your first day. How excited and motivated were you to learn and make an impact? You worked hard. You went the extra mile to provide as much value as possible. You were motivated to make an impact and have your ideas heard.
Now, think back on the moment when you started becoming unfulfilled. As time passed, your desire to learn, improve yourself, share your ideas, and give your emotional input decreased as your desire to keep your head down and follow orders increased.
Your unique ideas and motivations became suppressed and you became an employee trained to do only the task you were hired for, making you a cog in the company and replaceable.
How can you rediscover your excitement and motivation? How can you find the career you deserve rather than accepting your current situation? Seth Godin answers this in his book, “Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?.”
He writes, “We seek out experiences and products that deliver more value, more connection, and more experience, and change us for the better...The only way to get what you’re worth is to stand out, to exert emotional labor, to be seen as indispensable, and to produce interactions that organizations and people care deeply about.”
What is your current impact in your workplace? What can you do to increase your impact? Next time you are at work, imagine it being your first day again. When you see a coworker struggling, offer a helping hand. When you have a good idea, consider the ways it will add value to the company and how you can present the impact it will have. Start small and discover ways you can produce interactions that your organization and your coworkers will care deeply about.
You Can Deliver Value
How can you deliver value, connect more, and interact in ways organizations and people care about?
Erin Dertouzos (Chief People Officer at Quartet Health) has an answer. I heard her speak at Thrival Festival, an annual event based in Pittsburgh for exploring, innovating, and discussing new technologies and how they affect the workplace.
Erin shared her story in a panel titled “Headspace in the Workplace: Mental Health & Our Unsustainable Work Culture.” She described her difficult upbringing, how she grew up with alcoholic parents and feeling anxious about sharing her life story. She decided to impact her workplace. She embraced her experience, appreciated the hardships that made her, and prioritized helping others embrace their flaws and learn to use them to improve the world.
Erin now shares her story with everyone she works with. She discovered that this honesty inspires her coworkers and employees to follow her example. Instead of hiding flaws and being dishonest for fear of being ignored or passed over, they feel motivated and safe pouring everything into their work. They flourish where they may have otherwise kept their head down and only provided a portion of what they have to offer.
Erin exemplifies giving people room to become remarkable.
You Can Be A Leader
I have encountered many leaders in my life and they have all had one similar trait in common: the ability and desire to help the people around them succeed. If you want to stand out and become indispensable, think of ways you can help the people around you succeed. Offer words of encouragement to a coworker having a hard time. When someone does a great job, congratulate them on their efforts. When you come to your boss with a great idea, tell her if she allows you to pursue it and it works out well, she can take the credit. The more you build meaningful relationships within your organization, the more indispensable you become.
So instead of waking up, working, and performing the same task, what could you do to become a leader? Imagine the feeling of improving your coworkers’ day, delivering more value, and providing more connection within your company. More importantly, imagine how you’ll feel improving yourself and rekindling your motivation to grow and learn.
Imagine your impact.
Brad Driscoll is the co-founder of Think Big Marketing & social media expert helping businesses grow their brand and connect with customers.