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How Not To View Job Security: Part 2

Tuesday, July 12, 2011 by Slaughter Development

Last month we analyzed five of the sixteen tips that Yahoo! Finance provided about maintaining job security. Although those suggestions missed their mark, we did discover some that could be beneficial—if slightly altered.

Today, we continue our efforts by taking a look at five more ideas that have merit but need to be amended. Below are the tips that are “nearly there” quoted directly from the original article. We’ve also added our own feedback:

  • Give Progress Reports

Make sure your boss knows how hard you are working and what you are working on by giving him or her progress reports on a weekly basis. If your boss has evidence that you are pulling your weight, he or she will be less likely to fire you.

Feedback: Progress reports are a great way to gauge productivity. They can help you keep organized and can provide a team with useful mechanism to passively coordinate work.

However, they should never be used defensively. If you find yourself spending time trying to prove your value rather than being productive, consider looking for a  job where you’ll be valued for doing your work.

  • Just Say No to Drama

Be sure to avoid drama whenever possible. [Try:] “I’m so sorry, I really have to finish this project. Maybe we can catch up later after work?”

Feedback: While asking your coworker to “catch up later” is a polite response, perhaps it’s best to lead them directly to someone who can actually help (like the HR department.)

In general, though, while you don’t want to engage in drama, you do want to be aware of the issues. For example, if a colleague is experiencing personal loss or crisis, be especially conscientious in your interactions with them.

  • Be Aware

Even though you should avoid drama, try to stay informed about what other people are saying about you.

Feedback: Maintaining and improving relationships with coworkers is incredibly important. However, when it comes to your own career and image, do more than “stay informed.” It may be more productive to head directly to the source. Doing so will demonstrate just how diligent you are about establishing positive work relationships.

  • Don’t Take Unfair Advantage of Sick Days

Only take a sick or personal day when you absolutely need to do so…Whenever you’re feeling lazy, just remember the countless unemployed people who would love to have your job.

Feedback: While we certainly don’t condone playing hooky, Slaughter Development recognizes that a fried brain can have an impact on your work.

In any case, you shouldn’t be driven by fear at work but instead by genuine passion.

  • Show You Are a Leader

If you are on a new project and no one seems to be taking charge, step up and be a leader. They can’t fire you if you’re the point person of an important ongoing project.

Feedback: If it’s within your expertise, sure. Volunteering for a position you are not comfortable handling simply because no one else is stepping up, however, sounds like countercompetence.

If you’re taking on random projects just to make yourself impossible to fire, maybe there’s something fishy about your working environment

  • Get Personal

Make sure your boss knows about your family by keeping pictures of them on your desk or bringing them to company parties when appropriate. Also, show an interest in your boss’s family in return. Employers are less likely to fire someone they have a personal relationship with. Just be wary of over sharing. Keep personal conversations light and upbeat.

Feedback: If it is sincere and time appropriate, having a conversation about life outside the office can help create a sense of commonality and break an overly formal barrier. If possible however, be strategic about when this interaction occurs. Personal conversations can become a distraction and leave you scrambling to complete your work.


Stay tuned for our views on the tips that “hit the mark” in regards to usefulness.

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Like this post? Here are some related entries from The Methodology Blog you might enjoy:

How Not To View Job Security: Part 1 - As our economy continues to fluctuate, one major concern for Americans is job security. So it’s not surprising that many of us turn to articles published on the Internet for assistance and inspiration on how to keep ourselves up-to-date on current trends and solutions to this common predicament. But what if the advice leads you astray? Read on »
How Not To View Job Security: Part 3 - Today we wrap up our three part series on job security by highlighting five tips we feel “hit the mark” when maintaining your position at work. Read on »
Failure, Risk and Success - Cathie Black, chairman of Hearst Magazines, recently published a book that unveils her secrets to success. Interestingly enough, much like Slaughter Development, her tips encourage readers to embrace failure and take risks. Read on »

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