17 Great Examples on How to Take Initiative at Work

The most successful people are those who see something that needs to be done in the workplace and step up to handle them. In other words, these people take initiative. It doesn't always matter whether these people are employers or employees; they are just used to demonstrating a sense of self-drive, self-awareness, insight, and personal motivation. 

As you should know, taking initiative at work brings several rewards. It helps individuals to climb the professional ladder and also helps significantly to grow a business. Every wise person (employer or employee) should strive to take initiative at work. Here are tips on how to make that a reality: 

Work On Your Confidence 

Working on your confidence is one of the first important things you have to do if you want to start taking initiative in your workplace. Sometimes, it may take a lot of confidence to make some important moves that will bring the necessary rewards you want as a roll-up-sleeves person. 

Know When to Do Something 

Timing is another important factor you want to get right when you want to be taking initiatives in your workplace. Most opportunities seldom come twice. Know when the time is right for you to pounce on any opportunity and make the right impression. Timing determines the ultimate results of initiatives. 

Do More than What Is Expected Of You 

Whenever you get the opportunity to contribute to a major project, make sure you deliver more than what is expected of you. You should have the zeal and the desire to go above and beyond with any project. When you demonstrate this desire, it can always fetch you favors. 

Develop a Team Mentality 

Sometimes, all it takes to take initiative is to develop a team mentality. When you consider yourself as part of a team, you will not hesitate to do everything that can move the team forward, even if you are not asked to. 

Do Whatever You Believe Needs To Be Done, Even If It Is Not Part of Your Responsibility 

This tip is very similar to the one above. The only difference is that it encourages you to take up more responsibilities, even when you don’t feel that task is the responsibility of a team you belong to. 

Make Quick Meaningful Decisions 

As hinted earlier, delays can be dangerous for someone who really want to take initiative at work and achieve the right results. You may have to make decisions in a split second. Don’t be afraid to make these quick decisions, especially when you are convinced it can bring positive results. 

Be Persistent 

Persistence is another wonderful factor that can help you to become a reliable roll-up-the-sleeves person. You can’t take initiative today and wait for three months before making a new move. You have to be persistent with making the right impressions if you need good results. 

Learn To Approach People You Can Learn From 

There are many people in your workplace you can learn from. Approach them as soon as you can and express your desire to learn from them. This is already an initiative, but it will help you to take even more meaningful initiatives in the future. 

Try To Lead By Example 

Ideally, it becomes easier to take initiative when you are trying to demonstrate to others that it is important to do so. If you are opportune to lead a team, lead by example by taking more initiatives than anyone else. 

Challenge Yourself to Try New Things Every Day for a Week 

If figuring out when to take initiative or waiting around for a perfect opportunity is no longer working, take steps to do more than the average person does. You can hack this tip by challenging yourself to try new things every day. 

Make a List of Things around You That Are Not Quite Good Enough 

Another way to always figure out what to do at any time to make a positive impact in your workplace is to make a list of things around you that are not just good enough. Start trying to make them good enough. 

Help People with Zero Expectation of Getting Any Reward 

There are lots of things to gain from helping people without actually expecting something in return. When you do this in the workplace, it will be seen as taking initiative, and it can win you favors with employers and coworkers. 

Actively Request Feedback and Follow It 

When you send in your work, make sure you request feedback and follow it. All these will help to project you as someone who takes initiative and works toward making improvements. 

Always Keep a Positive Attitude 

Showing a negative attitude in the workplace will dampen the energy around you, and this can cause lots of problems for you are those around you. Always keep a positive attitude, and you will spot the right times to take initiative. 

Be Prepared For Any Opportunity 

The best way to grab an opportunity with both hands is to be ready for it. You have to be always ready to seize an opportunity and make the right impression. 

Be Bold To Share Your Idea about Workplace Improvement 

Sometimes, taking initiative can be as simple as sharing your idea about workplace improvement. Of course, you will need to share the idea with those above you – those who can actually make the important decisions. 

Bring Solutions, Not Problems 

In anything you do, make sure that whenever you take initiative, it brings solutions and not problems. Of course, you can't always be sure of an outcome of an initiative you take, but you should weigh the implications and take the step when the chances of success are pretty high. 


Taking initiative at work can bring you several successes. Be bold, and be ready to seize any opportunity to take initiative. Take these 17 tips seriously, and the rewards could be massive.

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