IN MANY of the seminars I conduct on personal effectiveness, I often pose two questions to my participants.
The first is: “What do you as an employee expect from your boss and organisation?” This question attracts many answers, such as a better work environment, financial incentives, recognition, investment on training, other fringe benefits and so forth.
The second question I pose is: “What does your organisation and boss expect from you?” There usually is a momentary silence that is followed by muffled answers such as “to be more hardworking”; “have the right attitude”; “a high sense of integrity”, “being trustworthy” and “make more profit for the company”.
These are relevant answers and they refer to basic qualities that are automatically expected from any employee. Without integrity or trustworthiness, it would be difficult to work anywhere. If you do not have the right attitude, you will not last long in an organisation.
The one outstanding quality that makes you competitive and a valuable asset to everyone in your life is your ability to display “resourcefulness”.
When your boss gives you a project and asks you to deal with it, the last thing you want to say is that you cannot complete the project because it is hard to get your hands on the relevant resources.
This may be the real situation, but put yourself in the shoes of your boss and empathise with him for a minute. Why were you employed in the first place? You are a resource of your organisation and it is the way you think and how you get the job done that will make you a valuable asset to your organisation.
How then can you become more resourceful? Here are a few suggestions:
Connect emotionally to your boss’s needs
Being emotionally connected means that you are completely aware of the goals and objectives of your organisation. You are also acutely clear about your roles and responsibilities, and what you have to do to fulfil them, regardless of whether all the right resources are lined up in front of you or not.
Knowing this will allow you to work effectively as an excellent team player because you need to communicate well with others so you can tap their expertise and achieve the targets set for you by your organisation.
Bridge the execution gap
The execution gap refers to the status quo of the organisation, and its current problems or issues and the need to move to an ideal situation where these are overcome. As a resourceful person you will be crystal clear about your need to provide the action plan to bridge this execution gap. To achieve this, you need to take the next step.
Develop an innovative paradigm
Whatever your job scope is, try to develop an innovative paradigm by occasionally coming up with new and novel ways to do what you are doing differently and more productively.
Instead of waiting for your bosses to initiate something, try to develop new ways to make your current job more efficient and effective. Post suggestions to your organisation about how to improve certain processes. This will encourage an innovative and resourceful mindset.
Embrace training and development
All established organisations invest in staff training to help employees boost their skills in a variety of ways. Instead of being apathetic towards these training opportunities, embrace them with a passion.
Seize the chance to learn a new hard or soft skill that will keep you performing at your peak. Create a positive impact in your professional and personal life by trying to find ways and means to put into practise what you have learnt. This will allow you to see things from different perspectives — just what you need to become a more resourceful person.
Article by Daniel Theyagu, who has been a training consultant for 25 years and is the author of five books. He has designed and conducted training for more than 300 companies in different industries, both locally and internationally. He runs his own firm, Lateral Solutions Consultancy, and is an adjunct trainer with Nanyang Technological University. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.lateralsc.com