It’s so easy to complain about work. It’s HARD, right?
The to-do list keeps getting longer, bad attitudes and mistakes ambush our workdays (and add to the to-do’s), morale is down, we feel undervalued and the ‘real’ innovative work we’re interested in keeps getting pushed to the bottom of the heap…underneath all that administrative crap no one else wants to do.
What would you say if I said that this perspective could be one of our biggest professional and personal limitations?
Take a moment to consider someone with whom you work who always seems to be unhappy and unhelpful…and a supreme delegator to seemingly 'do nothing'. In your day-to-day operations, do you avoid this person as much as possible? If you ever needed to recruit someone for a project, would this person even make the long list? Probably not.
Now, take a moment to think about someone with whom you work who seems to be shockingly happy and un-phased by set backs, missed deadlines and bad moods. When asked to help, does this person typically respond with “…sure, I’d be happy to help”? Even further, if this person commits to a project, does he usually return a solid product on deadline (or even earlier) and within budget?
Right. I know what you’re thinking…while this second person can make the rest of us feel, well, like a jerk on our worst days...isn’t he the kind of individual with whom it’s a pleasure to do business?
I believe the distinction to be this: Gratitude. When one is grateful for having a job, for having the opportunity to gain knowledge through their work environment, for receiving the ‘lessons’ provided by the more challenging situations, and certainly for an income…it infiltrates everything he does.
Many of us already apply this concept of being grateful to our personal lives and often it bleeds over to all aspects of our lives, but how often is it proactively considered relevant to our careers? When a potential client with a small budget comes your way, do you say “I’m not interested; the budget is too small?” Do you ever find yourself saying, “It isn’t my job,” or “They don’t pay me enough,” or “I don’t represent these kinds of clients”?
You're not alone. But I'm suggesting that a simple shift in thinking could actually mean more, and even MORE LUCRATIVE business. I’m not proposing that you pursue dead-end opportunities. This is more about approaching everything with a curiosity and intention to assist, no matter the outcome for you. If it won’t work, then so be it, but consider that there may be a hidden benefit from the interaction. Be appreciative of the outreach.
Because if you think about how much you enjoy working with “person #2,” guess what?....so does everyone else. Let me say that again: SO DOES EVERYONE ELSE. A sense of ‘professional gratitude’ will draw people to you. A positive attitude, which means expecting…and accepting of…the good with the bad equates to a higher brand resonance as well as more customers. And then they’ll be inspired to tell others about you. Try it out and see what happens.