The Challenge of High Potential: Initiative Is Everything

I keep saying practically in all my posts – Me! Me! ME!  I need a new challenge.  I can do the job.   I have the potential to shine and excel at any task.  However, what does it really mean to have a potential? Most importantly, why am I so adamant that it makes all the difference in a candidate?

During my extensive research related to career advancement and personal development, I have stumbled across many articles that address what hiring managers are looking for, when they set out to fill a gap.  Turns out, it is not necessarily about what you have done, but about what they perceive you will do once you are hired.     

 According to Malcolm Gladwell, research shows that there is no single greatest predictor of success in any job.  Past outstanding performance and track record of exceeded expectations will help establish credibility.  However, demonstrated success in the particular job is the only thing that predicts success in that job.  So what does make a difference in who gets hired and who ultimately excels?

100 business leaders interviewed by LinkedIn agree that “initiative is everything“.  Why?  Because of what drives the initiative.  What is it that causes someone to take action?  What prompts someone to raise their hand and say “I’ll do it”?  To be honest, I  couldn’t tell you what makes others step up.  But I know exactly why I am always pleading for a new challenge.  I want more responsibility, because I was bestowed a brain, and I am not afraid to use it.  In fact, I have a passion for learning new things.  Doing the same thing and staying in the same box makes me feel numb and dehumanized.

Of course, that is not the only motive.  The post cites many other reasons for taking initiative, such as:

  • Enthusiasm
  • Passion
  • Loyalty
  • Self-motivation
  • Eagerness to contribute
  • Ability to recognize the need for action
  • Inquisitiveness
  • Can do attitude
  • Commitment
  • Adaptability and flexibility
  • Optimism…

Just think about it.  What can someone who possess these traits potentially do?  These are all qualities of a superstar! Taking an initiative – and getting it done – is an excellent way to demonstrate what I am capable of and make everyone question what else I have the potential for.

So when you ask me, why you should hire me over the next Joe, I have the perfect answer – I  have the potential to excel. I possess all the qualities of the superstar.  I have the optimism, the passion, the drive, the attitude and the aptitude to succeed.  All I need is an opportunity to prove myself.

Let’s focus on the future.  Let’s focus on what I can potentially do.  I belong on your list of high potential.

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