As we continue to climb the list of our top 10 traits of an indispensable employee, we find ourselves reaching traits 6 and 5, Adaptability and Communication.

6) Adaptability (Flexibility)

In today’s fast-paced and highly competitive world, one thing is certain, change happens whether we want it to or not. This includes everything from technology, to the workforce, to our customers, to the marketplace. While change is to be expected, it is not always welcomed. However, you can be sure that if you resist change, success will be difficult to achieve.

While the core values and purpose of your business typically don’t change, the strategies that you use to implement them should be very fluid and flexible. If you see something isn’t working, you shouldn’t be afraid to acknowledge it and move on to a new method. Adaptability is a key ingredient in your success.

Keeping a flexible mindset and adapting to change willingly increases our knowledge, profitability, success and overall value. Here are a few things to remember about being adaptable:

Embrace change. Recognize what has changed, is changing, or is about to change. Don’t be afraid to break your routines. Your success depends upon how well you can adapt.

The data doesn’t lie. If your data systems and early warning signals have been accurate in good times, trust the data and adapt immediately.

Increase your speed. Greater opportunities come to organizations that can adapt quickly. Don’t wait too long to take action.

Appreciate and recognize the hard work that everyone has done. This is the easiest step to skip and the most important one not to. Taking the time to celebrate will be rejuvenating and gives us the fuel necessary to continue.

5) Communication

Our professional success is greatly impacted by the way in which we communicate. In any line of business, effective communication is essential. Effective communication is key to winning trust and confidence from any individual or organization. We spend our workday communicating with several different types of professionals, including clients, co-workers, employers, and suppliers, all of whom communicate differently. With that being said, you cannot underestimate the importance of communication.

As we all know, many problems can arise as a direct result of people failing to communicate or not communicating effectively. To avoid or minimize those issues it is essential that we constantly develop and are aware of our communication skills. Becoming a good communicator takes constant attention and effort on our part. Review the four tips we have outlined below to improve and refresh your communication skills:

Think before you speak: Everyone comes from a different background. You want to be courteous to them as a professional and a person. It is very easy to get distracted and say something that could potentially be misunderstood and offend or confuse the other person.

Listen and comprehend: People want to feel that they have been heard and understood. Approach the conversation with a positive attitude, and a willingness to see other points of view. Effective communication involves finding a mutual understanding.

By focusing on what the other person is saying and then responding you can eliminate most misunderstandings.

Be personal but stay on topic: Try to stick to relevant topics appropriate for the workplace. While some small talk is good, it can turn the conversation in a completely different direction and negatively affect the outcome of the conversation.

Be courteous of other’s time: Time is valuable for everyone. If the other person seems distracted, you may need to keep the conversation short. Sometimes it is best to agree to continue the discussion later.