Career Advice: Act Like You Own The Place
There is a lot of career advice out there. I should know—I wrote a whole series on Being a Better Employee.
It's filled with some great, helpful tips—but there's one big one I missed.
If you really want to stand out and get ahead at work, you should look around and model yourself after someone that has already made it: the owner.
Does that mean you should start bossing people around and picking on the most insignificant details to torment your coworkers with? Nope, wrong again.
Don't Act Like the Owner: Think Like the Owner
There's a difference. As an employee, you have to worry about your little sliver of job and how it might fit into the bigger slice of pie that is the company.
If you think that's stressful, think about what the owner has to think about:
- Every single employee
- The future of the company
- The revenue
- The competitors
- How to lower costs
- How to increase profits
The list could go on and on.
My point is this: you don't have to worry about these things because you're not the owner, but it doesn't mean you shouldn't.
Start thinking like the owner and you'll see how quickly your perspective changes.
Owners don't check out at 5 o'clock because "the day is over."
Owners don't take a day off because they want to go to the beach.
Owners don't get caught up in the minutiae of everyday office politics.
Is it because they're better than the rank and file? Nope.
They just have bigger fish to fry.
Take More Responsibility
By acting like an owner, you should take on more of that responsibility. Trust me, the owner will appreciate an employee that is not only doing his/her job effectively, but is also worrying about the bigger picture. It will make you look better and it will also change your perspective on your job.
Take the example of Amazon employees that took the light bulbs out of their vending machines—they saved the company $20,000 in electricity costs. Guess who noticed? CEO Jeff Bezos.
So where should you start? The good thing is that owners have so much to worry about that you could pick any one of these "problems" and figure out a way to improve on them:
- Employee morale
- Office politics
- Technology solutions
- Efficiency (my personal favorite)
The list could go on and on, but you get the point.
Start thinking like an owner today—it will make you a more valuable employee and it will give you some idea of what it's like in case you want to start your own business some day.