Being Flexible


As long as you have a flexible attitude, you will have no problem accepting the different changes that each new day brings.

To be flexible means to be willing to adapt to change. Being flexible in your work requires that you keep an open mind. There are many situations in the workplace where you will need to be flexible. For example, working for a company requires that you work in a team with the rest of the staff. Working as a team takes a certain amount of flexibility by each employee. Everyone in a team has a different way of working. In order to reach your goals as a group sometimes you will need to be flexible to work successfully with your coworkers. No job or task should be considered beneath you. You also need to be willing to take on challenges that seem beyond your comfort zone. As long as you have a flexible attitude, you will have no problem accepting the different changes that each new day brings.

So what does it take to be flexible at work? Here are five keys to being flexible at work:

1. Be willing to do extra work
2. Accept that you might get thrown off your routine
3. Learn to balance your own needs with those of others
4. Work beyond your title
5. Get back on track

Be willing to do extra work. When you’re in the workforce, there will be times when you’re asked to take on more work. Maybe your boss needs help with a special project or someone else in your department isn’t going to be able to meet a deadline. Think of these situations as opportunities to be the team player who helps make the winning play in the workplace.


Accept that you might get thrown off your routine. As we discussed in an earlier lesson, getting into a routine is important in order to stay focused at work. However, there will be times when you’ll need to be flexible and break out of your routine. At any time, additional tasks could be added to your to-do list and it’s up to you to work them into your day. This may require you to stop what you’re currently working on, rearrange your schedule and shift gears. That’s what being flexible at work is all about.

Learn to balance your own needs with those of others. As you settle into your job and show your value and expertise, people will start to come to you for help. It will take flexibility on your part to balance these requests with your own duties. Of course, it would be easy to turn your back on these requests and simply focus on your own work, but then you wouldn’t be doing your part to help the team.

On the flip side, you can’t always just drop everything you’re doing to help someone else. Sometimes the task that you’re working on is more important and must be given your full and immediate attention.


Work beyond your title. The phrase, “That’s not my job.” doesn’t belong in the workplace. Even though you probably have a job description that outlines your responsibilities, you will be expected to do things that aren’t covered in the description.

Remember, no job or task should be considered beneath you. If your manager asks you to take out the trash, even if that’s someone else’s job, don’t hesitate to do as you are asked. Likewise, if you’re asked to do something that is more challenging than you’re used to, don’t be afraid to work outside of your comfort zone. This is a great opportunity to show initiative and prove that you’re willing to do anything to help the team.

Get back on track. The biggest challenge with being flexible and breaking your routine is getting back into your routine. Switching gears in the middle of a task breaks your concentration. However, in order to ensure that you have a productive day, it’s important to get back on track after an interruption.

Want to learn more about developing a positive attitude? Try our free course on attitude with Conover Resources.

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By | 2017-04-30T16:18:21+00:00 April 29th, 2016|Corporate, Education, Soft Skills|0 Comments

About the Author:

Terry Schmitz is the founder and owner of The Conover Company. Terry has been involved in the development of assessments for both education and corporations for over 30 years. He has developed hundreds of job-specific assessment systems that link to skill building systems.

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