Taking responsibility seriously does more than make you an upstanding corporate citizen. Most large organizations have a list of leadership competencies for top positions, and seriously responsible people possess the qualities most companies are searching for. The responsible leader is great at getting things done, at meeting tough deadlines, at delivering what she promises. “Leadership maturity” has become an increasingly common buzzword in corporate circles because companies are looking for individuals who possess the traits that maturity connotes, and taking responsibility seriously is one critical aspect of maturity. Thus, people who take responsibility seriously early on are likely have a better shot at leadership roles than those who don’t.

successful people

There are some specific ways seriously responsible people can benefit:

1. THEY RECEIVE THE BEST ASSIGNMENTS.

When you volunteer to do whatever needs to be done— including the worst jobs—eventually you also tend to get the best ones. When an important, challenging assignment arises, your boss doesn’t want someone on it who might slack off or become discouraged. She wants someone she can depend on, and if you develop a reputation for responsibility, you’re the one who will come to mind when making assignments. Obviously, working on the best projects puts your work in the spotlight and increases the chance that you’ll get noticed… and promoted.

2. THEY GET PICKED FOR TEAMS THAT AVERAGE PEOPLE ARE ROUTINELY EXCLUDED FROM.

In most organizations, various elite teams and task forces are formed to address critical organizational issues. A students, by virtue of their fast-track status, are often included on these teams. Developing a reputation for dependability and diligence will often qualify average people for membership in these elite groups. Team managers know they need a balance between people who are idea-generators and those who can execute; people who take responsibility seriously fall in this second category.

3. THEY WIN TIEBREAKERS WHEN BEING CONSIDERED FOR PROMOTIONS WITH OTHER CANDIDATES.

When it comes down to a race between candidates with roughly equal credentials, the one who is the more dependable usually wins. As much as managers respect skill and knowledge, they respect serious, responsible people even more. No one wants to be the one to promote someone who later turns out to be a problem, who ducks out of assignments, or fails to follow through on promises and disappoints high-level executives.

fresh students

4. THEY BECOME STRONGER CANDIDATES FOR LEADERSHIP POSITIONS.

board of directors wants a CEO who is hardworking, dependable, and doesn’t make excuses, especially in today’s climate where fiscally irresponsible CEOs have done terrible damage to their organizations. This requirement for the CEO position filters down to other leadership roles. Taking responsibility seriously doesn’t mean you’ll get one of these top jobs, but it certainly qualifies you for them.