Q & A: When hiring a new team member, how important is a positive attitude?

A positive attitude

I’ve hired, led and mentored people for over 25 years, and find attitude as important as aptitude—maybe even more so.

Your belief is your biology, and when you believe, you achieve. A positive attitude means a healthy self esteem: a willingness to try new things, an openness to change, and a determination and drive to succeed, even when the odds are against you.

I remember a close friend being concerned when her son was entering the job market for the first time. Here was a guy who had no work experience, but was polite, upbeat, and wore his willingness on his sleeve. I told my friend I would hire him in a heartbeat.

You see, you can teach people new job skills, but it’s hard to change a negative disposition. My friend’s son got a job quickly—a good one too—and has been moving up the ranks since. There is nothing like having a happy and willing employee on your team.

A positive attitude can be very infectious and effective, especially when your team is facing major change. I’ve seen highly-trained experts kill a great idea with negativity, and have watched tenacious believers soar. I know, because I’m one of the latter who climbed the ladder!

So–go for it!

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