12 Reasons Being a Highly Sensitive Person Is Your Greatest Strength at Work
Being highly sensitive can be your biggest asset in the workplace.
Posted October 21, 2021 | Reviewed by Jessica Schrader
- Research shows managers consistently rate people with higher sensitivity as their top employees.
- In the workplace, HSPs tend to focus on the big picture, create harmony, and act with integrity.
- Highly sensitive professionals often have a high drive for growth and are always evolving and advancing at work.
Common workplace situations that may be moderately stressful to others—like speaking in meetings or getting feedback (even just meeting over Zoom these days)—can quickly overstimulate you.
This is because HSPs process information more deeply and thoroughly. So it’s not uncommon to overthink decisions, beat yourself up for working more slowly than others, or judge yourself for not being gregarious and outspoken.
However, research proves it: managers consistently rate people with higher sensitivity as their top contributors. As work becomes more automated, the need for professionals like you—ones with natural intuition and creativity—has never been more crucial. Your abilities can never be replicated by technology.
12 Superpowers Highly Sensitive People Bring to the Workplace
Stepping into your power as an HSP at work requires you to recognize that your innate qualities are rare and in demand—and to know the value that gives you.
1. You're diplomatic when it matters most.
As an HSP, you think longer and more deliberately before speaking. That means you’re more thoughtful with your words. In the workplace, this translates into being able to balance different people’s perspectives and tactfully communicate, even when the pressure is on.
2. You're a brilliant critical thinker.
Studies have shown that sensitive people have more active brain circuitry and neurochemicals in areas related to mental processing. So the HSP brain not only takes in more information but also processes that information in a more complex way.
This helps you explore various angles and paths of a work challenge that your peers are not as likely to.
3. Your self-awareness is unmatched.
Self-awareness is an indisputable asset in terms of your career. For example, people with more accurate self-perceptions tend to perform better in the workplace and are better able to tailor their leadership style to the situation at hand.
4. You're skilled at spotting opportunities for innovation.
This vigilance means you’re constantly scanning for ways to make improvements in the workplace and offering novel suggestions. You probably also find that you’re the person who highlights gaps before they become problems, which can save your company valuable time and money.
In essence, your attention to subtleties makes you a creative, inventive problem-solver.
5. You're capable of integrating and managing large amounts of information.
A large majority of my coaching clients are product managers or project managers.
This may sound strange, but it makes complete sense when you think about it: HSPs’ depth of processing and conscientiousness are the perfect combination for roles that require organization, collaboration, strategy, and information management as core skills.
6. You have a pulse on team morale.
Research shows that HSPs have more active mirror neurons (which helps them empathize and understand other people’s behavior). This is why you may find that you can sense people’s moods long before they say a word, as well as absorb their emotions as if they were your own.
This can help many HSPs sense people’s emotional needs in the workplace—whether sensing when their team is burned out, knowing if a certain individual needs more support, or reading between the lines to suss out when their client or boss is unsatisfied.
7. You have strong intuition.
As an HSP, you have a great capacity to recognize patterns and synthesize different inputs, which can be a secret weapon in decision-making. Your intuition is more highly developed than that of non-HSPs because you’re constantly adding new data to your bank of knowledge about the world and yourself.
And according to a survey of top executives, the majority of leaders leverage feelings and experience when handling crises.
8. You impress with your thoroughness.
As an HSP, you are the one who shows up to a presentation with comprehensive data. Or you might be the coworker who spends extra time preparing to dazzle an important client.
Whatever the case may be, your dedication and commitment wow others and oozes professionalism. Others look to you to drive excellence and uphold standards.
9. You focus on the big picture.
HSPs don’t dabble in the mundane. You are likely after the bigger “why” behind strategies and actions your team is taking.
Driving towards a larger purpose helps keep people grounded and focused, particularly in the face of uncertainty. As a leader, you are effective at helping others find meaning and fulfillment in their work—qualities anyone would want in a great boss.
10. You create a harmonious work environment.
Your experience as an outsider has probably made you passionate about inclusion.
Due to your ultra awareness and empathy, you value different working styles. As a result, you give people the space to be independent and create working conditions where they can thrive.
11. You're a pillar of integrity.
HSPs deeply value fairness, which means you uphold your promises and stick to your word, and you can always be counted on to follow through. Your voice can make a difference in the workplace, especially when it involves speaking up in the face of inequity or mistreatment of others.
12. You're constantly learning and growing.
Every client I’ve worked with has an insatiable thirst for knowledge. These highly sensitive professionals have a high drive for growth and are frequently immersed in personal and professional enrichment outside of work. This is the best career insurance there is, because it always ensures you’re evolving and advancing, regardless of the conditions around you.
As a highly sensitive person who experiences strong emotions, you might feel like you’re carrying a heavy load at times, but the truth is, you likely have a huge amount of untapped value to share with your coworkers, clients, and in your career field as a whole. Embrace being an HSP in the workplace for all the positives you bring to the table.