Are You "Fireproof?" Techniques For Job Security

It has been said that less is more. Well, sometimes more is more, especially in the workplace. More knowledge, more skills, more contacts; we must take advantage of any and all opportunities to increase job security. As unemployment rates continue to rise, we should all be prepared to reinvent ourselves in order to adapt in a volatile job market. The following tips offer ’employment insurance’, by utilizing techniques based on your temperament.


– Advertise fears about layoffs and downsizing

– Come across as an ‘old fogey’, who is resistant to change.


– Evaluate abilities and determine which additional skills could make you more valuable to the company.

– Talk positively about solutions you can bring to company challenges.

– Actively network with colleagues about potential opportunities.


Guardians are the most likely of all types to be tied to the past and resist change. In today’s job market, resistance to change can spell career suicide. If you are a Guardian, you’re not keen on workplace surprises. Be sure to keep up with advances in your field, so that changes don’t catch you unawares. It is a good idea to regularly observe additional skills needed by the company, and consider other positions where you might be a fit. Commit to learning at least one new skill every year to stay relevant and employable.


Artisans are often the most adaptable, but like to control their own destiny. If you are an Artisan, you may have trouble accepting helpful advice. Be careful not to move into anger or emotionalism; strive to maintain a sense of humor. Bosses appreciate the employee who can stay positive when times are tough. “If you aren’t part of the solution, you are part of the problem.” As with Guardians, it is always important to keep adding to your skill set.


Idealists often absorb not only their own pain, but that of co-workers who are facing a shrinking job market. If you are an Idealist, you might concentrate on helping others, while you neglect #1. Take time to pat yourself on the back now and then. It can be helpful to write down positive contributions to the company’s bottom line. An Idealist typically communicates via global descriptions; bosses are usually looking for specific facts. Keeping a list of accomplishments will help you to maximize ‘face time’ with the boss – and gives you a confidence boost!


Rationals, who comprise only 5-10% of the population, can come across as arrogant or too intellectual. Like Idealists, a Rational needs to translate abstract visions into concrete facts. This makes the information understandable for the more numerous (though less cerebral) Guardians and Artisans. Since Rationals seek expert status, you sometimes have trouble moving into a new area where you are a novice. Get over it. Sticking with an outdated skill set will ensure a prominent spot on the lay-off list. Ever the pragmatist, the Rational mind will benefit from doing a risk analysis of different options and potential actions.

Establish a Good Reputation

In the current job market, making a good impression is more important than ever. New employees should prove dedication to the company by working hard, turning out quality work and staying away from gossip and complaints. Earning a reputation as a hard worker goes a long way in contributing to job security.

Avoid Complacency

Experienced employees should take advantage of a network of contacts within the organization. Hard work and a positive attitude will give you a competitive edge. A deep knowledge of the organization and understanding of its current situation will strengthen your advantage.

All employees must learn the art of self-promotion. Speak positively about past efforts and current plans to keep the company functioning, even thriving. Regardless of your temperament, you must be seen as part of the solution in order to persevere.