Attitude is Just As Important As Skills

So much training and development focuses on skills, that attitude is often overlooked. Attitude is what makes you and your team get out of bed on cold windy mornings and rush to work. It’s what makes you look for a yes when all you hear is no. It’s what makes you see the opportunity when everyone else is seeing the threat.

Here are 10 ways to get attitude:

1. Know that you can – Look at how other people succeed against the odds. Work out what they’ve got that you haven’t. Go and get it!

2. Know a man who can – Too often, you ask your people to struggle with something they’re not really hired to do. It might save you a few pounds, but it damages attitude. Focus them on what they do well. Outsource the trivia.

3. Set visual goals – What’s got to be done before you can take the team out for an amazing night on the town? Get brochures, pictures of where you’ll be taking them and put them where they can be seen. Bring goals to life.

4. Accept good advice – Half the world wants to provide business advice these days. Find a good adviser, ideally SFEDI accredited so proven ‘user friendly’ and listen to what they say. Share the challenge; accept good advice.

5. Trust people – Delegating is tough and every boss thinks they can do it best. Give responsibility freely and let people make the job their own.

6. Love mistakes – Children learn to walk by falling over. Adults learn by making mistakes at work. No business makes progress without making mistakes. Accept it!

7. Passion is proportional to reward – As boss, your reward is the company’s profits and increasing market value. Don’t expect people to be as keen unless there’s something really good in it for them.

8. Money alone does not motivate – Status and recognition are as important as money when it comes to creating attitude. Start by saying thank you, then show it in increasingly tangible ways.

9. Social responsibility creates attitude – Pulling together to paint the scout hut, reclaim a nature reserve, or provide work experience for kids with special needs unites a team. It also shows that you care.

10. Democracy is cool – Sure bosses need to make the big decisions, but let the team make the rest. Does it matter if your van fleet is Mercedes or Ford? Let the drivers do the test drives and make the final choice.

As you can see, attitude is something you grow in-house. It’s not something your people can learn on a course. Attitude overcomes barriers; courses sometimes highlight barriers. To be successful you need both, but always start with attitude!

Written by Robert Ashton for The Leader World Online Magazine

Robert Ashton

Robert Ashton’s ‘The Entrepreneur’s book of Checklists’ was the third best-selling small business book in the UK last year. His latest book, ‘The Life Plan,’ contains 700 simple tips for people big on self improvement, but short on time. He’s also a popular speaker and works with individuals and organisations that seek to make a difference.