Taking Initiative at Work: 10 Tips for Career Growth and Success

Joanna Tresa

Last Updated: September 4, 2023
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Are you tired of feeling like a small fish in a big corporate pond, swimming aimlessly, hoping for a stroke of luck to propel your career forward? Well, guess what? Luck might play a role, but it’s not the driving force behind those who climb the ladder of success. The real secret? Taking initiative.

Initiative isn’t some mystical quality possessed only by a chosen few. It’s a simple yet powerful mindset that can elevate your career from stagnant to soaring. Taking initiative means more than just ticking off your to-do list. It’s about stepping out of your comfort zone, seizing opportunities, and shaping your career path rather than letting it shape you. It’s all about having the right mindset and the willingness to roll up your sleeves and get things done.

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Now, you might be wondering, “Why bother? Isn’t it enough to show up, do my job, and collect my paycheck?” Well, it can be if you’re content with mediocrity. But if you’ve got bigger aspirations, if you’re hungry for career growth, and if you want to be the captain of your professional ship, then taking initiative is your ticket to success.

Here’s the thing: nobody ever achieved greatness by playing it safe and sticking to the script. Success stories are filled with individuals who dared to step into the unknown, take calculated risks, and make things happen. They weren’t content with the status quo; they challenged it. And you can do the same.

Ten Tips To Take Initiative At Work

  • Volunteer to help

By volunteering to assist without being asked, it shows that you are a team player. And that’s quite a crucial component of initiative since it indicates that you aren’t only about your own success. If there is anything you can do to assist the company in achieving its objectives, please do so!

Consider taking on a duty that is typically avoided. Make the offer to train new hires. See if you can help your coworkers have a more tolerable day by checking in with them. Any amount of assistance results in a victory for the business, your team, and your career. 

  • Ask questions

Asking questions can demonstrate to your supervisor that you are interested in the company and want it to succeed. If you don’t meet often, asking your supervisor for feedback is a wonderful place to start. You’ll have a clearer idea of what they want from you and how to do your duties effectively. 

What do you observe that piques your interest? What particularly about your profession would you like to learn more about? Your inquiry will not only show initiative on your part, but your manager will also see that you are laying the foundation for future success. 

  • Ask for more responsibilities.

Don’t shy away from asking for additional work or responsibilities. You never who might be in need of an extra hand at work. If you don’t ask, you can find yourself waiting and wishing for a chance to come your way someday. So don’t be hush away from pursuing your goals and bring about your desired outcomes. Discuss your interests with your employer. Encourage them to grow in the direction you desire. If you have a specific task in mind, you may also just state your request. 

After all, it’s the team work that makes the dream work!

  • Think about ways to improve a process

As much as it’s crucial to understand and implement ways to improve an organisation’s growth, it’s imperative to look for ways to innovate and grow as a team and as a system. Consider how you’ll go about presenting ideas to your team after you’ve compiled a list of practical methods to innovate your business. Just the concept framework has to be written down; the rest of the plan need not be.

Perhaps you could start with a simple idea to speed up a process by automation. Might cost a few bucks, but hey, if you can buy time for your company, then you’re on a roll!

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  • Become a beacon of positivity

Work can sometimes be stressful, and there’s no doubt about that. It is during such times when a bunch of busy backend developers or a stressful sales team might need some ray of hope and sunshine to keep them going. All it takes is doing the bare minimum – perhaps a few words of affirmation, a coffee treat for a team that pulled an all-nighter, or simply being calm during stressful hours.

  • You can always lead in a company

Right now, you may have the role of an associate, but that doesn’t mean you have no leadership role to play. When possibilities arise for promotions to supervisory positions, many businesses prefer to promote from within. Showing early signs of leadership can help you stand out when such opportunities arise.

  • Become a problem-solver

Although being able to solve problems is a useful ability for employees to have, it goes in vain if you don’t share your solutions with your coworkers. In any professional setting, issues and hurdles must be overcome eventually, even though nobody likes the concept of doing so.

When problems develop, speaking up and offering solutions demonstrates your problem-solving skills, which gives your employer the idea that you’re taking the initiative in a challenging circumstance.

  • Having a team player mindset

Don’t be the one who takes credit for the efforts and ideas pitched in by your teammates. It’s quite the lazy move if you want free credits, but it sure isn’t fulfilling. A company’s success is a result of the talent of its workforce. So imagine adopting a team-player mindset to avoid the discomfort of being on a team that is at odds with one another. You’re not just pushing your team to be better, you’re also giving your organisation the growth it deserves!

  • Being open to more opportunities

Your time in the company will always have a plethora of opportunities you can take up in the course of your professional journey. Catching these opportunities when they arise and being prepared to engage with them is essential to truly make the most of them.

Keep yourself organised and equipped to take advantage of each professional opportunity you come across. Being ready shows initiative and a desire to take on additional responsibility.

  • Consider doing more work you’re proud of

This advice probably came naturally to you when you first started working. However, your motivation to only submit work that you are wholly happy with lessens gradually over time.

It’s a normal cycle that takes place as someone becomes used to their job.

The lethargy of complacency, however, is dispelled by an employee who shows initiative when it comes to the calibre of their job. No matter how tiny the endeavour, only put your name on something you’re proud of.

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How Mentoria Can Help

With these simple yet effective tips, taking initiative will only be a piece of cake! And if you’re keen to hop on to more ways of taking initiative, let Mentoria help! With our top-notch counsellors with diverse experience, we not only help you grow in fields we know you’ll excel in, we’ll also be with you in every step and every progress made. After all, it’s team work that makes all the dreams work! Get in touch with us now, because we’re just a phone call away and cannot wait to help you excel in your professional journey!