When I wondered if I would be missed before I left my corporate job, I was reminded that if you put your fist in a bucket of water and pull it out, the water fills in where your fist once was. For most of us, if we leave our position, the company will continue without us, but I’d suggest that there are exceptions.
In this virtual way of working, one question has become increasingly important:
Is anyone missing my presence? Are my colleagues noticing that I’m not physically around? Does anyone care?
In a virtual workplace, being visible takes more effort. We must be intentional with how others see us and the results of our work. Consider these questions:
- Has anyone seen your face lately?
- Do your managers know what you do to contribute to the workplace?
- Do your managers know how you make your workplace contributions?
- Does your work get done smoothly in the background?
- Do your managers know what challenges you overcome to keep things running smoothly?
- Could you be easily replaced if you stopped doing your work?
You will be missed if you are valuable.
How do you become valuable? You can become valuable by:
- Developing unique expertise. Unique expertise is much more rare than people realize.
- Being a person who goes above and beyond to deliver more and better than what is expected.
- Becoming a thought partner to decision makers. Offering a different perspective that is respected and headed is like being an advisor.
- Being willing to take on projects or challenges that others are not. Be selective about these additional tasks and ensure they will benefit your career.
You’ll be missed if you’re visible.
You can’t be visible hunkered down by yourself in your home office space. Speak up. Show up. Zoom is the room of the day so make sure you’re there. And turn on your camera! Let people know what you’re doing and what challenges you. Let your colleagues see some of your personal side so they know you have a personality. Developing relationships and camaraderie is still important even when conference rooms are replaced by conference calls.
And here’s the last reason that you’d be missed.
Be of service to others.
This does not guarantee you keep your job, but it is helpful. Get to know people and become a colleague that people appreciate and want to be with.
If you make yourself valuable, make yourself visible, and are of service to others, your company may continue after your departure, but you will most certainly be missed.