Just the other day I was talking to an old colleague of mine who had just lost his job and couldn’t bring himself to accept the fact that he was let go. It happens, again and again.
Good Employees, having worked long hours, nights, weekends and often for years find themselves on the receiving end of the stick and have a hard time reconciling to the fact that they were let go. We often have a tendency to feel invincible and feel as if we are indispensable. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Corporations are in it to make money and have a fiduciary duty to maximize the profit for their shareholders. As such, their focus is to be as lean and efficient as possible, otherwise they run the risk of being left to bite the dust themselves. The employees, having spent few years in an organization often become comfortable and forget this simple fact. Some become too arrogant or start thinking they are indispensable, others simply don’t keep up with the advances in their field and quickly find themselves outdated.
The colleague I mentioned above was a highly accomplished software engineer at one point, but failed to keep up with the technical changes and advancements in his field and suddenly became obsolete, once the company decided to move to a new direction.
Employees have a duty to the organization they are working for, but they also have a duty to themselves to ensure their skills are current. As an employee, you must invest in yourself and continue to evolve if you want to always be in demand and ready for the next challenge. Additionally, you must always remember that you are part of the organization only because you are providing a value and unless you keep yourself focused and reinvent, someone else will be willing to provide the same value for less.