Crystal Spraggins, SPHR
When is the last time you crafted a job posting that included the phrase “Must be a troublemaker” under “Requirements?” Probably never, right?
Well, why not?
Your organization needs a few troublemakers. Here are five good reasons why.
- Troublemakers Aren’t Easily Satisfied with the Status Quo
“If it ain’t broke there’s no reason to fix it,” I’ll give you that. But let’s be honest. The way you do business today varies in some significant ways from the way you did business ten years ago (maybe even five years ago), and in ten, five, or three years from now it will surely vary even more. Complacency, “resting on your laurels,” and waiting until the wheel squeaks before you decide to oil it has never been good business, and it’s definitely not good business in this current global, fast-moving economy. But a troublemaker can be your “secret weapon.” These folks are constantly thinking of smarter and better ways to do things, and who doesn’t need that?
- Troublemakers Are Problem Solvers
No troublemaker worthy of the title is content to simply point out problems. Instead, solving problems is his goal—that’s where the fun is, after all. When a troublemaker has problems to solve (and come on, your company has problems, right?), he’s happy. Solving problems provides the troublemaker with mental stimulation that creates positive energy, and a troublemaker also is motivated by the possibility of attaining that particular type of satisfaction that only comes with a job well done. It’s a win-win, really.
- Troublemakers Are Natural Leaders
Troublemakers don’t sit around waiting to be told what to do. They’re proactive and see potential issues way before most other folks. Sometimes your more contented employees will become annoyed by what they perceive as the troublemaker’s tendency to “borrow problems,” but this isn’t the troublemaker’s goal. He just naturally thinks ahead. Don’t hate him for thinking. Your business needs thinkers, right?
- Troublemakers Take Their Work Very Seriously
When it comes to The Work, troublemakers don’t like to goof around but instead prefer to resolve issues and generally get things done. Unfortunately, sometimes their focus and serious manner gives others the impression that they’re cold, or mean, or uncaring. It’s not true. They’re just into quality. And standards. And getting stuff done right. I’m betting your organization could use someone with that attitude.
- Troublemakers Are Brave
There’s a lot of talk these days about authenticity and integrity and how much companies need employees who are willing to speak up. Well, look no further than your resident troublemaker! Troublemakers are passionate and opinionated and self-motivated. They’re willing to take a stance because they believe in their ideas and your business. Why in the world wouldn’t you want to take advantage of that?
Now here’s the thing. Troublemakers aren’t always the easiest to work with. They’re not the most accommodating personality in the room, and they may rub some people the wrong way.
But they’re committed, smart, and all about improving your business. They care.
And every organization needs employees who care. I’ll wager yours does.
So don’t shy away from hiring a troublemaker or two! Doing so could very well be one of the best decisions you’ve ever made.
Crystal Spraggins, SPHR, is an HR consultant and freelance writer who lives in Philadelphia. Crystal has a particular interest in issues that affect American workers and toils under the philosophy that "HR is not for wimps." She also partners with HRCVision, a full-service HR consultant practice specializing in leadership and diversity training. Contact her via her personal blog,HR BlogVOCATE or at firstname.lastname@example.org.