How to take the initiative at work

by | 04.06.24

By using your initiative in the workplace you can demonstrate your value to your Manager and colleagues.  Proactive employees tend to take more responsibility for their actions and display qualities that make them good leaders.  When you show initiative at work and lead by example you can also motivate your colleagues to perform to a higher level.  Here are some tips on how to do it effectively.

Do more than what is expected of you

Most employees have a list of tasks that they have to do as part of their job.  Seeking to do more than your usual duties will show your Manager that you are dedicated to the Company’s success.  You will also serve as an example to others.

Always be reliable and look good

This may seem unimportant but by always getting to work early, being prepared to stay late and having as little time off work as possible shows commitment.  Also by looking smart and presentable at all times you are setting standards for your colleagues.

Have a career plan

Know what your career goals are as this will help you gain the confidence you need to show initiative at work.  Once you define your longer-term objectives and how to achieve them, assess where you see opportunities in your role to build the necessary skills, work proactively to grasp these opportunities

Work on your confidence

Even if you have the required skills to be successful at your role, being proactive and inspiring others to follow your lead requires high confidence levels.  Foster your self-confidence by constantly setting and achieving small goals.  Then you can push yourself to take action to pursue larger accomplishments in the workplace.

Develop a team mentality

Although the ultimate goal should involve improving your career prospects, taking initiative and motivating others requires adopting a collective, team-based mentality. Seeing yourself as a team member rather than as an individual will likely show others that your objectives involve more than just personal achievement.

Get feedback on your work and follow it

Asking Managers for feedback on your work will often reveal key improvements you can make that you may not have noticed them.  Constructive criticism can greatly help you figure out how to best take initiative at work.  Acting on feedback will show your Manager and workmates how dedicated you are to improving yourself.

Always be positive

Maintaining a positive attitude is crucial to boosting your career opportunities and motivating others.   Managers often develop strong opinions on employees particularly when a Company is experiencing difficult times.  A strong, positive attitude can show you have the ability to succeed no matter what.

Be prepared to take opportunities

Opportunities tend to appear unexpectedly and you need to be prepared to successfully approach them.  Determining what issues are more likely to occur than others and what reaction will produce the best results will help you turn challenges into opportunities for you.  When those around you see you are always ready for a challenge it can inspire them to work harder and improve their careers.

Head off upcoming issues

Many workplace challenges occur regularly.  Taking the initiative to prevent issues ahead of time can help boost your image as a problem solver.  It also help to discuss potential upcoming issues with your workmates.  This will help you gain a deeper insight into what may cause the issues and determine how to fix them.

Share ideas for improvements

If you are confident, well prepared, positive and aware of your workplace, you will likely come up with ways in which you can improve it.  One key element intaking initiative at work involves participating in discussions and sharing how you think workplace processes could improve.

So to summarise taking the initiative at work will definitely boost your career opportunities.  Don’t be afraid to express your opinion.  Share ideas or suggest improvements.  Actively contributing to the management and running of the office will show you are ambitious and hopefully earn your promotion.

Good Luck