Taking Leadership Initiatives at Work

Taking Leadership Initiatives at Work

Some people want to go to work and keep their head down, but maybe you aren’t one of them. You’re sure that your leadership material, and you want the opportunity to show it. However, this can be tricky politically. You don’t want to look as though you are trying to oust your superiors, but you also want to be remembered when it’s time for promotions.

The tips below can help you walk that tight line.

  • Go the Extra Mile

Look for ways to do that something extra. This doesn’t mean that you have to constantly stay late at work every day and work on weekends, which can often simply result in being given more work without the accompanying pay or responsibilities. Instead, look for ways to help coworkers without stepping on anyone’s toes. If you don’t have much work history, you may be assigned fairly menial tasks, such as photocopying and filing in an office. If you do those things well and with enthusiasm even though they are tedious, you will stand out.

  • Find a Solution

Another great way to show that your management material is by being the person everyone goes to for solutions. This can require you to quickly analyze information, pick out the relevant data and decide how to proceed. If your company needs a fleet safety program, you could start by pointing out that this is actually better conceived of as driver safety programs after reading through a guide on how to build one. This should be a multipronged approach that involves safety technology, video, and a steady and consistent plan for coaching drivers. If fleet management is not your strong point, look for another area where you already are or you can become the expert, at least within your workplace.

  • Encourage Other Employees

Too often, people get caught up in the idea of a leader being the glorious head of things and forget that one of their main roles should also be to lift up others. Give credit to your colleagues when it is due and find ways to help them reach their potential in the workplace within the reasonable limits of your position. If yours isn’t a supervisory role, you don’t want to insult your coworkers by making it appear as though you think you need to bring them up to your level, but you should make an effort to be a good team player and to be a positive, encouraging presence at work. You can share career boosting strategies with others in a way that is collaborative and encouraging instead of authoritative and pushy.

  • Training and Education

Put your money and your brains where your mouth is and consider doing some seminars in leadership and management or even going back to school for an MBA. The former can be a great way to dip in casually to certain concepts and lay the groundwork for a promotion. The latter is not for everyone. The MBA is a demanding degree that is right for some career paths and not others, so be sure to do your research first. If you don’t already have a college degree, you may want to consider getting a bachelors. This can open some doors for you that might be closed without a degree.

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