As students in a competitive field, we’re constantly asking PR pros “how can we stand out from the competition?” Will another internship or that really great blog post you wrote make a difference? Maybe. But one thing that is sure to differentiate your from your peers- being a self-starter. According to Dictionary.com, self-starters are people “who begin work or undertake a project on his or her own initiative, without needing to be told or encouraged to do so.”
Here are a few easy steps that will turn your into a motivated self-starter!
- First to arrive, last to leave. There’s something to this cliché adage. Believe it or not, your supervisor will notice your commitment to the overall success of the organization. It also shows your enthusiasm for the work you’re doing.
- Do your homework. Doing extra research on your agency’s newest client or their latest award shows you’re not only invested in the firm but that you go above and beyond what’s required. It shows your boss that you aren’t afraid of taking initiative.
- Ask question. You may feel like asking questions makes you appear unsure or inexperienced. But the reality is, asking questions shows you’re willing and interested in learning more. It also lets your supervisor know you’re not too proud to admit that you don’t actually know something.
- Get out of your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid to take on complex projects or unfamiliar assignments. Seizing new opportunities will help expand your experiences and the next time the assignment comes up, you’ll be able to take it on with confidence.
After spending most of our lives in school being given strict instructions and rubrics, taking initiative without much direction can be challenging. But one of the aspects of a self-starter is that they are not afraid to make mistakes and, more importantly, they learn from them! So the next time you’re in the office, try out these self-starter tips and think "what would Leslie Knope do?"