Employers are looking for people with enough of the right stuff, so choosing your attitude can make a difference to both you and their business.
“You can teach a bubbly person to repair shoes, but you can’t put the personality into a grumpy cobbler” – John Timpson (Chairman of Timpsons Shoes)
Here are 5 value-adding attitudes, what they look like, how they help you and employers, and some questions to make you think about your own attitude:
1. CURIOUS – exploring, questioning, connecting, ideas, lifelong learning
Key messages: ask questions, research things, put your ideas forward, never stop learning, don’t ever think you know it all, actively seek opportunities, without the right opportunities you may never know what your potential is, find the things you love and the things you do well
Benefits: helps you to explore your potential, shows employers you are genuinely interested
Questions: What are you most curious about? When is your curiosity most aroused?
2. APPRECIATIVE – generous, giving to others and self, recognition
Benefits: people will warm to you and so you build relationships more easily
Questions: What do you like to be appreciated for? What does your best friend like to be appreciated for?
3. HOPEFUL – optimism, acceptance, opportunity, chance
Key messages: accepting that things don’t always go according to plan, never giving up if it’s really important, knowing that there is place for you and your talents waiting for you, having hope is a choice and within your control, nobody else’s
Benefits: More likely to see opportunities, support initiatives, show persistence
Questions: What hopes do you have for your future working life? When are you at your most positive? What difference does it make to how you feel and what you do?
4. FLEXIBLE – adaptable, ambiguity, uncertainty, breadth
Key messages: about ‘give and take’ in terms of responsibilities and roles, contributing over and above what is expected of you on occasions, multi-tasking is common, life is not a straight line, it’s OK to zig-zag and try new things out, change is inevitable
Benefits: opens up options and possibilities, helps you to create your own luck
Questions: How flexible are you? How do you react when asked to do something new or different?
5. RESILIENT – dealing with whatever is thrown at you, ‘bouncebackability’, overcoming obstacles, maintaining optimism and belief, not letting things get to you so you are stuck, noticing what’s positive or going well
Key messages: there is always someone worse off than you (“I cried because I had no shoes, then I saw a child with no feet”), requires physical and emotional fitness, slow down, take control of your life rather than letting events control you, change your story from ‘life is not fair’ to ‘what can I change?’
Benefits: you’ll live longer, generate more options, develop more comfort with uncertainty and change
Questions: What obstacles have you overcome? What event can you take control of in your life right now? What are you doing to stay physically and emotionally healthy?
Every single snowflake is different from another – each one is unique just like you are. If you embed these attitudes into your language and tell stories of how they have fueled your actions and the impact or difference they have made, they will make you more employable.
It’s not what happens to us that determines our lives, it’s what we make of what happens – our attitude!
Which one resonates most with you?
For five more attitudes to adopt for success in work and life, click here.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Employability Coaching!
About the Author: David Shindler is the author of “Learning to Leap, a Guide to Being More Employable”. An experienced coach and people development expert, David specialises in developing and accelerating employability. He also runs the Employability Hub (a social learning community and resource centre), the Learning to Leap group on LinkedIn and Facebook fan page. Tweet David, or contact him via his website.