Beware Of Job Security!

I was chilling out with a friend last night at a local pub. Like many working class, she is very unhappy about her job.

Very soon, our topic circled mainly around job security. Her philosophy is that in order to prove her value to her boss and prevent herself from getting into the layoff list, she would keep a portion of the knowledge and contacts to herself so that her work is not easily being picked up or replicated by her colleague or new hires.

In fact, this is probably the “conventional wisdom” most of the working class keep close to their chest, particularly those who work in the big and slow moving organizations.

However, let’s think deeper, is that the job security we are looking for?

Should we have this hidden agenda implanted as part of our working ethic after all?

Is this the work environment we want to be in anyway?

Let’s look at both sides of the coin. As an enterprise that takes pride of taking good care of its employees, the last thing that would possibly happen is for an employee to hold the company’s interest hostage by withholding information that is critical to the success of the company in the event where knowledge transfer is necessary.

After all, the employer should create a culture where employees can grow at their own pace within the organization and in order to do so, employees should be self motivated to ensure a smooth knowledge transfer to take place.

The employer should live and breathe this culture with all employees regardless of seniority or position. Thus, anyone who is not in line with this set of core values shouldn’t even be hired in the very first place.

As for the employees, if this “conventional wisdom” of job security is getting onto us, we should probably ask ourselves if this company is the place to be with in the mid to long term.

In fact, there is no such thing as job security as in most cases, the employer can terminate the work relationship with any employee at anytime, not only in the event of a reorg.

Moreover, if the company is having a poisonous culture, what is the point of sticking around with our “secret knowledge”?

In fact, if this is how we ensure our job security, the odd is dangers are very much around the corner.


Because feeling secure at work by withholding information means we are desperate and definitely losing our charisma to other potential employers. It also means we no longer keep our five senses out there for proactive self improvement.

Taking job security to a broader context, what is security after all?

Simply put, it is the belief in ourselves. That is, our very own self confidence that drives us to achieve our goal as we march along our path to happiness. Deep inside, the feeling of being secure is coming from the full control of our own fate.

Once we figure this out, we will realize job security is nothing but an illusion, and the source that creates this illusion is neither our boss nor our colleague but ourselves.


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