So you got the job – congratulations! Now that you’re in, what’s next? It’s certainly not time to kick back and relax – you’re only getting started, so now is the time to start making your mark! In order to excel in your position, you’ll want to contribute your creativity, critical thinking and leadership skills to your unique role, whatever it may be. Flexing these three skills will show them what you’re made of while on the job! Here’s how…
Creativity goes beyond artistic expression, which means you don’t need to work in a creative capacity to make use of your creative abilities! Even if you are in sales, project management or administration, the creative mind is a forward thinking mind. According to studies, this growth mindset is the foundation of strong creativity skills. People who adopt a growth mindset are perseverant and look at things from a “fail-forward” perspective, taking each failure as a lesson. A growth mentality allows you to be open to different ideas and see new ways of doing things. This way, you also ensure that you are constantly learning and developing yourself.
You can apply creativity to just about anything, such as leadership for example. Creativity in leadership encourages creativity in the rest of the team, fostering a trusting environment and bringing in fresh ideas to the table! Try putting your own spin on a mundane routine activity, like weekly team meetings. Invite attendees to share something unique about themselves before sharing their updates, and make this a reoccurring practice.
While critical thinking is one of the most important skills to have in your toolbox, in practice it can be rather tough to display. Critical thinkers are observant, they think outside of the box and they question everything. Whether you are in a brainstorming session or completing a progress report, ask thoughtful questions to show you’re paying attention to the crucial details. Ask yourself, “How can we do things differently?” and propose an innovative solution to an existing problem.
This problem may be operational in nature, for instance a problem tracking merchandise while doing inventory for a retail company. Ensure that your proposed solution is not only logical but also evidence-based, by data and information you may have collected over time while observing the problem. Make it a collaborative effort and get your team’s feedback on your idea to help improve it.
To show that you are a leader, it starts with building real relationships with your colleagues and higher-ups. Not just work relationships, but genuine personal connections built on trust and camaraderie. These interpersonal skills coupled with being a self-starter will highlight you as management material and could lead to a promotion somewhere down the line. Always take initiative and show enthusiasm about the work at hand.
Leaders are focused. They have a vision, help others and actively listen to what they have to say. By doing these things, you, too, can improve your leadership skills and show your ability to manage projects and people when the time comes. When sharing goals, talk about your own goals as well as any goals you have for your team and your company to show that you’ve got a vision for the future.
There are many ways you can build on these various skills to bring out the thought leader and innovative thinker in you. Creativity, critical thinking and leadership are three versatile skills, but there are so much more! Follow these tips and make it your own by combining them with your unique skillset to position yourself as a valuable team player and one to watch.
Looking for more ways to excel at your new job? Book a Virtual Career Meeting with Style Nine to Five’s Founder, Christie Lohr, to get personalized advice!
Anita Hosanna is a freelance fashion stylist and creative consultant with a love for community, fashion journalism and fashion tech.
Feature Image: Adobe Stock