Suze Orman's No. 1 piece of advice for getting ahead at work

Suze Orman
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As new college graduates throw their mortarboards in the air and get ready to begin their careers, financial expert and former CNBC television host Suze Orman has simple but solid advice for succeeding at work: Make yourself indispensable.

"Make those you're dependent on for a paycheck dependent upon you," Orman told CNBC Make It in 2017, and her advice is just as relevant for the class of 2018.

By proving to supervisors that you can be counted on to add value, you're making yourself an asset and creating job security. Especially as an entry-level employee, you don't want to be seen as a replaceable cog, but as an essential part of the company.

Whether you're entering your first job or just want to boost your standing with your boss, here are three ways to make yourself indispensable at work.

Pay attention

Know what your boss needs before they tell you — and make it happen without being asked. They'll come to rely on and be grateful for you.

"The more you are aware of what your boss needs, the better your chances are of being noticed," writes Rhett Power, co-founder of Wild Creations and the author of "The Entrepreneurs Book of Actions." "This doesn't mean you have to suck up to the boss. It just means being indispensable, someone who gets things done without, or before, being asked."

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Step up

Not all tasks are glamorous but someone's got to do them. Willingness to step up and tackle any job that comes your way shows your boss that you're reliable.

Best-selling management author and CNBC contributor Suzy Welch calls this the "favor economy." It's about "putting yourself out on a limb for somebody else with no expectation of immediate payback," she tells CNBC.

"For instance, offering yourself as a reference, placing a call to help someone land a job, or working a weekend or holiday so others can be with their families. Essentially, its currency is performing small acts of kindness and generosity as a way of life."

If you're willing to go the extra mile, you'll stand out.

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Develop a specialized skill

Figure out what your strengths are within the company and become an expert in one of those areas. Showing that you know the most about a particular topic or are the best at a particular task will make you the go-to person for that role.

Even better, Pepsico CEO Indra Nooyi advises, own a unique "hip-pocket skill." That's what helped her become one of the most powerful women in business.

This is an updated version of a previously published article.

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