Lessons from Elon Musk’s (former) assistant who asked for a raise

There’s a story going around about Elon Musk’s assistant who asked for a raise. After a two week test, she was fired. Here’s what we can learn.

The story, from Business Insider, goes like this:

In response, Musk told Brown to take two weeks off, during which he would assume her responsibilities and see if she was really critical to his success.

When Brown returned after two weeks, Musk told Brown he didn’t need her anymore.

Musk also told Vance that he offered Brown another position at the company, but she never returned to the office again after that.

Wow. that’s like the worst case scenario when trying to get ahead.

Fortunately, there are some good lessons we can learn from the story:

First, Taylor said, you’ll want to do an “audit” of your responsibilities. Take 15 minutes one day to think about what exactly you’re working on.

“Could a temp do what you’re doing and keep your boss happy?” Taylor said. If the answer is “yes,” or even “maybe,” you might need to step up your game.

Above all, Taylor said, “you want to make your boss need you — not just have you on board.” So consider: “What makes [your boss] successful and how can you align yourself with that?”…

Bottom line: You just want to make yourself an integral part of your boss’ success — and the company’s. What happens after that is out of your control.

Taylor said: “No one is indispensable. It’s just to what degree are you harder to replace.”

Seth Godin has a book about becoming indispensable – I’ve read it, I love it, and you should read it too. You can get an idea of the book’s content in this video below:

The video is about twelve minutes, but it’s well worth the time.

How can you become harder to replace to your potential employers? What skills can you learn while in school that will make you  a remarkable candidate?

Story via BoingBoing


Learn the secrets to getting more interviews and job offers!

Enter your name and email to receive your first free lesson