I have mentioned before that I am a big fan of Alan Weiss, consultant and author. I got his February newsletter, The Balancing Act, today and, as usual, it is thought provoking and informative. In this issue he talks about his experience of riding a train where the crew of the dining car had obvious pride in their jobs and, as a result, how pleasant the trip was for him. His observation on this was “I think this individual pride, and its ability to transform work and relationships, is a crucial consideration in terms of who we hire, who we become friendly with, and with whom we decide to surround ourselves. If we hang out with people who hate the work, hate the customers, hate life, and feel constantly oppressed, we’ll find ourselves subsumed in that quagmire.” He further muses “But if we surround ourselves with people who merely believe that they have the power and responsibility to do the best they can, so will we.”
This has always been my personal philosophy. I don’t work with or associate with “downers.” There is no need to. And you should not either! If you have control over the hiring in your organization make sure you are only recruiting and hiring people who have pride in themselves and their work. It will make your life more pleasant and productive and as Weiss’ story shows it will make the experience of your customer much better.
To me this is especially critical of the people you have working in your HR department. Do they have pride? Are they upbeat? There is nothing worse than having the “gatekeepers” of your organization be a “downer”! Oh by the way, this goes for the operator and receptionists in your company.
If you do not have the control of the hiring and you are surrounded by prideless “downers” don’t allow yourself to become a “victim.” Remove yourself from that situation as quickly as possible before you get used to it and become a “downer” yourself. If this is you, find another job and start by smiling today!