Here’s 4 of my favorite insights on being valuable from 2022 👇
⭐ “Be valuable, not available.”
Constant availability might be the norm, but that doesn’t make it necessary or optimal.
Most knowledge workers will get way more done by not being constantly available, because interruptions and context switching sap energy and focus. If emergencies occur regularly, something is wrong.
⭐ “You can tell if your work matters by whether people miss you.” — Seth Godin
It's a good litmus test to ask yourself what wouldn't get done or done as well, without you around. You’ll be happier and more successful if you do work that matters.
(IMHO there’s a slight caveat to this for technical people — people missing you is not the same as things crashing and burning because you didn’t document your stuff!)
⭐ “Develop ‘strategic incompetence’. If you hate doing something, let yourself suck at it. Then no one will ask you to do it.” — @albadawee
This is something I strive towards. I feel the urge to be good at everything I do, even things I don’t enjoy. Something about anything worth doing is worth doing well, right?
But that’s not strategic and doesn’t lead to a future where you do things you enjoy and are naturally talented at. Be valuable, and you can afford to suck at everything else.
⭐ “Being a multiplier isn’t always better — after all, at some point someone needs to do the actual work. And some efforts to be a multiplier don’t have net positive returns.”
— 80,000 Hours
It’s more than okay not to be a multiplier (typically something like operations, management, leadership). People who do the actual work are crucial, because without them there’s nothing to multiply. ❤️
(80,000 Hours is an organization dedicated to helping people make the most positive impact they can during a typical career.)