Being Employable

Prakul Kumar

Being learned/literate is one thing but being employable is another. Bookish knowledge gives us the bandwidth to understand the work. However, the facilitating skills for how to better manage work, people, business, working relationships, etc are not generally mentioned in books, one has to develop these and evolve with own experience, observing and analyzing situations, impacts and others in day to day life.

Starting a job after studies come with a level of expectations that one has a fair understanding of the functional area by virtue of the studies pursued. However as one grows in the corporate ladder the level of expectations keeps growing and one is expected to manage many fringes around work to perform effectively and efficiently – yourself or through the team in coordination with other internal and external stakeholders, cross-functional teams, etc. We are expected to overcome all hurdles and deliver without excuses. Citing issues like Role clarity, coordination within teams, non-supportive attitude from other locations, lack of accountability, no cooperation from other functions, etc are all considered as excuses. Most of these can be overcome by your strong relationships within the organization. And the strong relationship will be built on trust and others seeing you adding value to their work/function/team, you are carrying views/opinion/understanding that values/help them as you bring solutions/you are dependable – keeps others secrets only to you and confidential information shared with you is not used for making fun/opportunities to harm.

Here, I am going to share some of my professional experiences that I have gained throughout the years.

First, we need to understand the people we work with, people around us can be our well-wishers, not so much concerned and very much concerned as much as perceiving one as a threat too. Even if we understand the people around us that doesn’t mean we do not have to, or we can avoid working with people who are not our well-wishers, similarly we can’t be selective to work with only those whom we think as our well-wishers. What is the solution? Once we understand the people around us, we need to adopt different working styles for different people. This will help in navigating your way without getting struck.

Second, make sure that there is no space for ego in professional life. This will ease managing work and you will be able to coordinate with anyone in the organization. We need to understand that effective coordination within the team, between various teams, people is the key to success because the complexities in business are increasing day by day and thus the need for coordination. You need to believe that whatever you are asked to do is for organization and thus there is no space for Ego. Ego clashes virtually pull back the growth of the organization and thus everyone should put all efforts not to bring their egos to the workplace.

Third, learn the art of closing the assigned job in style. Every activity or work has a start and endpoint. In the due course of activity, there are a lot of nitty-gritty or minute things which can probably get missed due to various reasons of the paucity of time, knowledge about activity, etc. However, if you break the activity into small segments and apply yourself thoroughly in each segment in what are the critical points to be taken care of, what adverse can happen if you miss anything, what is the objective of activity and with the current way of working is it achieving the objective or I need to change the course or way of working, discuss within the team or other stakeholders to get their views and expectations, and so on so forth, all this can help you take care of the minute details and appreciation will be waiting for you. If you are doing any activity which is repetitive in nature, create notes and keep the notes safe so that you don’t have to put similar efforts every time.

Fourth, is the skill to take charge. It means, whatever is the role assigned to you, you need to understand it faster and start acting on it fully. Taking charge is not just a superficial assumption of the role, but it means that one has to take full responsibility and be accountable, from planning to execution to implementation – make things happen in the worst of the times and most adverse of situations, without compromising Ethics and straight ways of working, performing with Authority that system has provided, doing everything right and paving its own way for success.

Fifth, create your space in the organization. The faster you are known for good reasons in the organization, the faster you will be able to create your space. This will help you approach anyone to get your work done. This will happen when you make all efforts and start understanding the business, the people and ways of working and ultimately start adding value to the organization.

Sixth is the habit of noting relevant points for improvement. What happens is that our work/activities get discussed in formal and informal discussions, and sometimes great ideas or areas of improvement gets quoted by someone, make a habit to have separate folders in your laptop and desktop for everything you are doing and make use of notepad in that folder to take these notes from time to time. Every time you are embarking on any activity just refer to the notepad in that activity folder and go ahead.

Kumar is Chief Human Resource Officer at CG Corp Global

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