Replace Thyself

Essentially, one prepares to turn over the job as one is learning the job.

Last updated on January 27th, 2020 at 06:54 pm

A member of GaryNorth.com recently entered the workforce at entry level and has posed a question:

How would I know where I would be least replacable, especially as a young person with few (if any) highly developed skills? (Sic)

The question stems from earlier discussions about the desirability of being irreplaceable in one’s employment, to ensure that one’s employer will have reason to retain one’s employment in a recession economy.

However, irreplaceability is rarely a solution for someone who remains competitive.

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College for Dummies…and Non-Dummies

Are parents aware of an $11,000 degree program?

Last updated on April 9th, 2022 at 12:28 am

Re-posted with permission from http://www.garynorth.com


College for Dummies . . . and Non-Dummies

Gary North Reality Check (June 3, 2011)

Dummies pay retail. Non-dummies don’t.

This week, I spoke to a group of about 150 high school and college students. Most of them were products of home schooling. This is the ideal audience for my presentation on the way to beat the collegiate rip-off: a B.A. from an accredited university or college for $11,000 to $15,000, total.

I gave five one-hour presentations. The students seemed alert. No one went to sleep. There were not too many people chatting. I saw no iPhones or iPads. All in all, it was a good audience.

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Dealing With Recruiters

We each own our career, and from this perspective we should leverage the function of recruiters – middlemen – to our benefit.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 07:04 pm

The following was recently posted on GaryNorth.com:

I’m looking for general advise when it comes to working with recruiters. I’ve always found jobs on my own either through direct application or referral networking. What are the pro’s/con’s, general do’s and don’ts, things to say/never say to a recruiter, how to spot a shady vs legitimate recruiter, etc… I get regular LinkedIn request from recruiters, typically they go ignored, at the same time the nerd in my would like to go on interviews to maintain and build interviewing skills. Also I desire going on interviews to get a tighter feel for what my area has to offer and gauge more accurately my existing offer. (Sic)

From <http://www.garynorth.com/members/forum/openthread.cfm?forum=21&ThreadID=36862#181786>

Background

From a business perspective, recruiters perform a necessary function: that of screening out and deriving the best available candidate for a given employment situation.  As a matter of process, recruiters will represent the party that pays their fee.  As a matter of position, recruiters stand between that party and the party on the other side of the potential employment bargain. Recruiters are literally, middlemen.

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Part 2 – Performance Appraisal Implementation

If we are to control our future, we have to control our present; and we also have to build that future based on the present.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:59 pm

I have several options for my “review,” which we plan to schedule for this coming mid-week. I could take the approach of asking good questions and getting as much info from my boss as possible to see how I’ve done and how I can improve. I could ask to negotiate my “guaranteed minimum” bonus so that I get more than the “minimum” based on better than “minimal” performance (how that would be quantified is another question). I could negotiate for a raise due to 1) good performance and 2) being currently underpaid.

Yup, lots of ways to go..

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Part 1 – Performance Appraisal Framework

…establish a true picture of performance first, and don’t ever let compensation concerns affect the view of performance.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:57 pm

Recently on GaryNorth.com, a member asked about how to approach his upcoming six month performance appraisal, and for a framework for the appraisal.  Here is a detailed response:

When I accepted my job about six months ago we agreed that I would have a performance review every six months…

Excellent.

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Dealing with Workplace Incidentals

Can you accomplish one or more of your objectives within this system? Keeping in mind that this system is not unique, but pervasive; and differs only in detail at other firms…

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:56 pm

A series of statements recently posted on GaryNorth.com indicate an employee is trying to work through an understanding of his employment environment:

“I had told my wife I could try a dramatic approach, if needed, to try to get what I wanted (which included acting like I was quitting), but I told her the risk/reward potential of that approach wasn’t tilted in my favor in this situation.”

Nothing personal, and no hard feelings, but I suggest you act business-like. “Business-like” as if that next employer was watching. What image would you like him/her to see when you discuss your current behavior at that job interview? Let your preferred image guide your action.

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Exit Strategies

A carefully prepared exit strategy considers both leaving the current organization and entering the next.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:54 pm

The following question was posted on GaryNorth.com:

“What is the framework for formulating/evaluating exit strategies, as well as related tactics?”

Background: Military Context

In the military context, the purpose of a breakout is to save the remnants of a fight from total annihilation, so that they may be reapplied elsewhere at another time. Essentially, the force breaking out either evades or fights its way out using a series of deliberate tactical actions designed to preserve resources, deflect any opposition, and get to a place of safety; it doesn’t turn and run pell mell, as that is generally suicidal.

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Turnover Planning

The Turnover Plan serves many purposes beyond turning over a job to a successor. The basic value in publishing the plan is understanding the job in detail.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:53 pm

The following was posted to GaryNorth.com recently:

“If I decide to leave my job in the next several months, how should I plan to hand off my job to a successor in a professional manner?”

I suggest you publish a Turnover Plan. The ostensive purpose of such a plan is to “turnover” the job to a replacement, whether present or not. But, there are more strategic reasons for you to publish the plan, as indicated by the benefits. Publishing the plan:

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Perspective

…it matters little what perspective others have; yours is the perspective of paramount importance vis-a-vis your career plan. You may choose to adopt another/different perspective; then again, you may not. Same choice for everyone else.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:50 pm

This is part of a dialog recently posted on GaryNorth.com:

“How common is it for anyone to have a 40,000 ft perspective?”

per·spec·tive

[per-spek-tiv]

noun

  1. a technique of depicting volumes and spatial relationships on a flat surface.
  2. a picture employing this technique, especially one in which it is prominent: an architect’s perspective of a house.
  3. a visible scene, especially one extending to a distance; vista: a perspective on the main axis of an estate.
  4. the state of existing in space before the eye: The elevations look all right, but the building’s composition is a failure in perspective.
  5. the state of one’s ideas, the facts known to one, etc., in having a meaningful interrelationship: You have to live here a few years to see local conditions in perspective.

From: <http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/perspective?s=t>

Perspective is a human trait, in all humans, exercised to a greater or lesser extent in any individual as the individual chooses. Those that choose to step back and consider a broader (or another) perspective in any particular context will; those that don’t, won’t.

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The View From nn,nnn Feet

…because he’s in an organization, it’s the management components – accomplishing predetermined objectives through others, that constitute the largest growth opportunity, and will carry him to 10,000 feet over time.

Last updated on January 2nd, 2019 at 06:49 pm

This was posted recently on GaryNorth.com:

“Have you defined more specifically what you mean by the 5,000, 10,000, and 40,000 foot metaphors in another thread?”

The purpose of the analogy is to engage a sense of perspective that is at once micro, macro, and more expansive; and to promote a symbolic viewing of contexts (or components) as part of a larger, whole, and interrelated system: the system of one’s career.

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