For over a decade, I have been asking candidates during interviews what qualities they would look for from an employee if they owned a company.
The most common answer I used to get is “honesty.”
I have always found this answer interesting and odd.
Perhaps people answer with “honesty” because they have come across many dishonest people?
I personally expect everyone to be honest and believe that most people are indeed honest.
As such, for me, an honest employee is a given.
The second most popular answer I get is someone with extensive and relevant experience.
A fairly objective and reasonable answer.
That said, I personally would take someone with a positive attitude over extensive experience any day of the week, especially if they have a negative attitude and bad habits.
I have come across many people with extensive experience yet with negative attitudes and bad habits and I can objectively say, the negativity trumps the experience every time.
If you don’t have experience, no sweat, we can train you and that is on us.
A positive attitude can contribute 10x over extensive experience.
Allow me to explore this idea.
First, a positive attitude can be contagious and can significantly influence the work environment.
When individuals approach their tasks with enthusiasm, optimism, and a can-do spirit, it fosters a culture of collaboration, creativity, and productivity.
Colleagues are more likely to feel motivated and inspired, leading to enhanced teamwork and better outcomes.
Have you ever heard anyone say, “Bob is amazing to work with, he is so negative it is awesome.”
Next, a positive attitude lends better to accepting and even embracing change.
There is a reason there are expensive change management certification courses, so many people at all levels resist change even though it is inevitable.
They approach change as a chance for growth and continuous learning, while those resistant to change may find themselves left behind, despite their extensive experience.
Individuals who embrace change with optimism and resilience are more likely to adapt quickly and effectively, seizing new opportunities and navigating challenges with grace.
Also, those with a positive attitude, when faced with obstacles or setbacks, are more inclined to approach problems with a proactive and solution-oriented mindset.
They view challenges as learning opportunities and are more likely to generate innovative ideas to overcome hurdles.
Their optimistic outlook allows them to think outside the box, explore alternative perspectives, and find new approaches to drive success.
Moreover, a positive attitude remains a crucial factor in maintaining resilience.
Optimistic individuals tend to possess a strong sense of self-belief and the confidence to overcome obstacles.
They focus on finding solutions rather than dwelling on problems and complaining, reducing stress levels and enabling better emotional well-being.
This resilience allows them to bounce back from setbacks quickly and continue progressing in their careers.
Lastly, a positive attitude is a key characteristic of effective leaders.
Leaders who radiate positivity inspire and motivate their teams, fostering a culture of trust and cooperation.
They lead by example, demonstrating resilience, optimism, and a commitment to excellence.
While experience may grant leaders subject matter expertise, a positive attitude enables them to navigate through challenges, maintain team morale, and create an environment conducive to growth and success.
Years of experience undoubtedly hold value, the importance of a positive attitude at work cannot be underestimated.
In my perspective, a positive attitude is a significant differentiator.
I’ll take a person with a positive attitude over negativity and experience any day of the week.