Monday, January 25, 2010

Afraid of losing your job?


These days it seems we all are worried about the possibility of losing our jobs. Let's face it as leaders in the market, you are only able to keep your job if you perform and achieve results. Look at football coaches. To stay in place as the head coach you must have a winning season. Now if you have one bad season that's one thing, but repeat it the next season and your head goes on the chopping block. People expect results and our job as leaders is to get results. Especially if you are the HEAD Coach, or the CEO of a company. Those leadership positions require results. Always have and of course always will.

Now maybe you're not the head coach of an NFL football team or even the CEO of a Company, maybe you're the manager of a firm or a hotel or some other business where the responsibility still lies on you to perform and get results that impact the organization in a positive way. Store mgrs are responsible for their own smaller piece of the Company, but the pressure you feel is just as great as the CEO in most cases. You can still lose your position of leadership for the unit you are responsible for if you don't perform and get results. The point I'm making is this... If you are the head Leader in whatever occupation or organization you work in, if you are the Main leader at whatever level... you MUST get results or you run scared everyday that you might lose your job if things don't change quickly.

So I get to the question that I asked in the title of this post... Are you afraid of losing your job?
I think if you are worried about losing your job... you have to ask yourself... "Why am I worried?" I heard this quote one time and it made a lot off sense to me...

"If you're worried about losing your job, you might not be doing all you can to keep it."

There's a lot of truth to this statement. How many times have you felt like it's slipping away and you can't get your hands around it. The question has to be why?? What can I do differently to achieve or get different results. You can't keep doing the same thing can you? No.. so begin the change with the obvious question first. WHY is it not working?

Once you've figured out the why... then the battle is half over. Once we know what's preventing us from being successful we can create a plan to pull us out of our slump. As we work the plan we must track our results and adjust as needed as we work the plan.

I had a supervisor tell me years ago. "Make a plan, then work your plan." I'd add to that and say this... "then measure your progress, and adjust your plan to achieve your desired results."

Use these key points to be successful...
1. Know your market, know what it is you are working for. What's important to your business? Sales increases, Profits, People, know what the object of your business is. What's the mission?
2. Make a plan to achieve results. What are the results you want to see? Know where it is you want to go. You have to have a destination in mind, or your going nowhere on purpose! be sure everything you put in your plan positively impacts the mission... if it doesn't don't include it in the plan.
3. Work your plan. Assign it out, check it off, go through the process of getting done what you've put on paper. Follow up to ensure the plan is being executed.
4. Measure your progress. Are you moving the needle in the right direction? Are you improving? Are sales going up, are profits going up.
5. Adjust your plan if you see the needle is not moving in the right direction. Coaches are good at watching what's happening on the field and making calls to adjust to what they see. You must do this as well. What obstacles popped up on you that you didn't anticipate. Work around them.
6. FINALLY... as you see your goals being achieved.... make new goals that affect your mission and begin again the whole process... Steps 1-5.

To truly not be worried about losing your job only happens when you are taking charge of your destination and achievements and you know you are moving forward and it's because of what you are doing. It easier not to worry when your running the ship. We worry when we feel we have no control! So I say...

Take control. RUN your business, don't let it run you. Be flexible with your schedule, be flexible with your people, be flexible and open minded about any ideas or plan that helps to accomplish your mission. Commit to the plan. You must be sold out to it. You need others on your team and you need their support, but their interest in the plan is rarely greater than the head Coach. So saying this... if you're not giving it everything to succeed, neither will your people... your doomed from the beginning if you yourself are not committed. Now, aggressively act upon your plan. Execute it!

If you are afraid of losing your job, then do something about it. Act now before it's too late. This holds true with me, maybe it does with you as well, but if I feel I'm not performing and at risk of losing my job, then I've been given a chance to hurry up and correct the situation. Very rarely are we surprised by being let go. We know when were in danger, or at least you should if you're in charge. So the next time you have those worried feelings about losing your job, realize that it's still under your control to do something about the situation. You don't have to work in fear of losing your job. Everyone loves a winner! Make sure you are one! That's why you are in the position you are in... never forget this. Be careful not to make the mistake of thinking your in this leadership position because you did your time and you earned it. Your in this position because you get results. Stop getting results... you can't stay there.

written by Steve Phillips

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