20 Tips on How to Take Initiative at Work

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This post covers strategies for taking charge at the office. Taking initiative and doing what needs to be done is a game-changing habit that may assist you in standing out at work.

Initiative entails a sense of self-motivation, self-awareness, insight, and personal motivation.

Taking the lead builds your personal brand. You may serve as a role model for others who would want to follow in your footsteps.

1. Prepare well for your task ahead. It’s good to take ideas from different sources rather than just one source, so choose smartly who you are going to consult with about your proposal. The quality of the work product will depend on the quality of the input it gets.

2. Be focused when executing your tasks, but also stay flexible and be ready to adjust your plan by using what you have learned.

3. Take charge on the things that need to get done, even if they were not assigned to you. Being proactive is a great way of showing initiative at work.

4. Accept responsibilities for completing tasks no matter how big or small it may be. No one can be an expert in everything so do not hesitate to take on tasks that are beyond your area of expertise.

5. Don’t wait for others to tell you what is expected of you, but instead develop the habit of figuring out what needs to be done and then starting it immediately. When you begin a task, just get started right away.

6. Do not be afraid to ask question, but do so diplomatically and gain knowledge from the people you work with as well as those who are more experienced than you.

7. Be open about what you want and determine all possible ways of getting there and follow through with it. When you make your goal clear to others, they are more likely to support you.

8. Think of ways that you can contribute to your organization even if the duties are outside the sphere of influence for your job position.

9. Learn how to build strong relationships with others because it will be very helpful in getting things done faster and easier, as well as influencing other people’s perception of you and your work.

10. Engage and talk with people you meet for the first time. If you do not, there is a good chance that they will think of you as an impolite person or someone who does not want to be bothered with them.

11. Use every opportunity—big and small—to make positive impressions on others.

12. Be enthusiastic in your work and take pleasure in seeing things through to the end, even if it means that you have to put in extra hours. Never lose your sense of enthusiasm when working with others because it will give them a positive impression about you and whatever task you are finishing up.

13. Listen actively to what other people have to say and be considerate of their ideas, no matter how unsolicited they may be.

14. Accept new tasks even if you feel that it is out of your ability to perform. In the future, these accomplishments will build up into a solid record that can help you get promoted or just get recognized for excellence from your manager.

15. Do not be afraid to take initiatives on behalf of your ideas or suggestions, but do so with tact and diplomacy.

16. Don’t just think of what needs to get done—do it! Doing it right away without delay will give you the momentum that you need to keep up with the fast pace of your work life.

17. Try to avoid checking your social media profiles during work hours because it could be a waste of time and would disrupt the workflow for everyone else.

18. Don’t procrastinate because you are thinking about things too much that could actually stop you from focusing on the task at hand.

19. Be willing to do what other people are not willing to do because this is what separates you from the rest of the pack.

20. If there are things that you don’t understand, it’s better to ask questions rather than keeping your head buried in the sand and then having to deal with consequences later on because you did not bother attending the necessary meetings where the subject was discussed.


When you look at the list of actions that one must take in order to get ahead, it’s not really rocket science. You don’t have to be a genius with extraordinary scientific insights—all it takes is practice and dedication towards being your best self so you can contribute more value to your organization.

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