SUPERHEROES NEED NOT APPLY
Are you a work superhero(ine)? Are you the one who knows where
everything is, what everything costs, what happened to last
year's __________ and, who did what to whom when? In addition,
are you the one who can fix anything, soothe the raging client
and stay late daily? AND, are you the one through whom
everything must pass, or the only person who can do specific,
critical tasks ? Is everyone dependent upon you for something?
Watch out! You are not likely to be next in line for a promotion.
Why not? You have made yourself too critical to the
organization. If you are that indispensable and irreplaceable,
how can you ever be promoted?
There is another downside to being a 'superhero(ine)'. You
stand squarely in line for blame and criticism. You are a
walking target. You are in danger of becoming the bottleneck in
your organization. It may feel to you like control and power,
however, in reality, it is fraught with danger and uncertainty.
If others cannot do their work before you complete a task, who
will they point to when deadlines loom? On the other hand, there
is great joy in Mudville, when you step up to bat if you always
hit a homer.
Superhero(ine)s can be marvelous, organized founts of knowledge
and skill. They can also be perfectionists and control freaks.
You likely know one in each category. Sometimes the
superhero(ine) actually hoards tasks and takes on additional
responsibilities in a bid to become indispensable. Sometimes,
they simply want to prove what they are capable of producing. We
are all superhero(ine)s at times if we want to move up in our
organizations. The distinguishing feature is our awareness of
our reasons for undertaking tasks and responsibilities.
Your value to your organization is actually raised when you
teach others to perform competently, when you delegate well and
increase the skill and knowledge of others. Some great advice
from Harry E. Chambers, author of "Getting Promoted", is: "Learn
as much as you can about as many functions, tasks, and roles as
possible, but do not insist upon doing them all yourself. Learn
to give them away. Refusing to allow others to learn and expand
their boundaries is considered weakness. Being the perceived
bottleneck or control freak can be to your career what
Kryptonite is to Superman!"
Think carefully about your roles and goals. Be on track to
success on your own terms.