4 Ways to be an Independent Thinker in the Workplace

4 Ways to be an Independent Thinker in the Workplace

As we enjoy the start of summer and look forward to celebrating the country’s independence (#July4!), many young people are starting a new chapter of independence in their lives as well. It’s the time of year when high school grads are gearing up to go away to college and college grads are starting or looking for their first jobs.

And so, it’s really the perfect time to share with you our advice for being an independent thinker and standing out (in a good way) to make your job experience more fulfilling and to add value to team discussions. We all need to have a strong voice. The more we can share ideas and open our minds to diversifying our approach, trying new things and taking risks, the better our workplace will be for it.

question things

Question Things

If you don’t understand something or why a process is being done a certain way, please speak up and ask! Chances are you’re not the only one with the question. You never know what it can lead to: a better process or an end to a cumbersome one. You could provide needed perspective which is always helpful.
flexible-friendly workplace environment

Don't Be Afraid to Speak Up

It’s always a good idea to “say what you need to say” (thanks John Mayer!). Stop yourself from being held back by making generalizations like: “they’re more experienced, they’ve been working here longer or they know more about this than I do.” Go ahead, speak up and take a seat at the proverbial table to let them know what you’re thinking. There is a big difference between being honest and straight forward (which is often so appreciated and can move things forward for the better) than saying something that comes across as disrespectful. 

speak up at work

Always Be Learning from Others

Listen, observe and learn from what's going on around you. Even if it doesn’t directly relate to your job, it couldn’t hurt to know more about the company, your co-workers, and what is going on as a whole. Everyone works differently, and while it’s important to find your own style and what works best for you, there is a lot you could gain by collaborating with others. Being open-minded in today’s workplace is critical to your success. You never know what you could learn from someone you work with and what it could lead to down the road.


Strive To Do The Best You Can and Be as Efficient as Possible

Don’t just clock in and out and think you are done. The bottom line is not only are trying to improve as an employee you’re also there to add value and help the company you are working for. For example, I like to think of it as a challenge: How can I work quicker, smarter and more efficiently than I did yesterday? This can really motivate you to go above and beyond.

With these 4 tips in mind, you can declare workplace independence: stand out, make a difference and further your career. Cue the fireworks!  alaant workforce solutions

About the Author

Maddy O'Rourke

Maddy O’Rourke, Finance & Human Resource Specialist

Maddy knows the ins and outs of a successful recruiting and onboarding process playing an indispensable role in helping Alaant build its very own team. Perhaps it’s her love for sports—an enthusiastic Siena Saints and Buffalo Bills fan— that helps her with team building or her interests in other cultures as she loves to travel and is a dual citizen of the U.S. and Ireland. The Emerald Isle holds a piece of her heart and so does her cat, Zoe.

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