The power of a good attitude, and what it can do for your career.

There is something about being positive which just makes doing things easier. I’m sure we’ve all been there and had those days where we were just not in a good mood the whole day. We would breeze through the day doing our work and not really care too much about it. I personally didn’t like those days. I knew I wanted something more, and to feel like I was accomplishing something of worth at the end of the day. 

My father had some compelling words to tell me around the time I was about to start college. I was doing a job for free and I remember him inspecting my work and saying I did not do it 100%. My typical high school response was, “Who cares, nobody is paying for this.” He looked me dead in the eyes and said, “Son, it is your job to do this job right no matter what. You should always do your best whether you get paid or not.” Those words have always stuck with me and have made my work ethic change as well.

I was back then and still am a hard worker. I love to be present and show my employer I’m worth their investment in me. Not only for them, but for the people I support. Loyalty and wanting to make a difference allow me to get up in the morning and show my face from early in the morning till in the late hours if need be. Good attitudes are hard to come by these days, and I had plenty of exposure at my last job regarding this.

Negativity, poor attitude, resistance to change and bad behavior are all symptoms I have seen in workers I had to fire (at least the vast majority). I remember sitting in front of each one of them and having a tough conversation about their behavior and how they would have to change their behavior if they wanted to continue to work at the hospital. I’m sure many of them felt I was nuts for telling them this. I’m not going to say I was successful at all of these conversations, but I do know my point was clear how if they did not make the necessary changes, they would no longer work for the hospital. I would enjoy hearing about those who made a turn around and who were more pleasant to be around.

Unfortunately, some of those could not be changed and we ended up having to part ways with them. I know when an employee comes to work with a bad attitude, it seeps into others minds like a poison. I have had those coworkers whose behaviors would creep into my mind. Their constant complaining and arguing with a manager about a process really set me to a point where I wanted to move into a closed room and work alone. This was definitely not healthy for me and my team. I really wish I could have had a conversation with the person about their behavior and how they were affecting me and others around us. I never had the conversation for my own reservations; however, I feel I would be more prepared to have the conversation now.

The point of all of this is positive attitude is infectious on others. I love being positive about things and keeping my head up even though things are tough. Somewhere along the line in my short 5 year career I decided it was time to be a man and time to be professional about things. It maybe could have been my certification which straightened me up as a professional; who knows. I just know I enjoy going to work and making a difference. Something about a positive attitude will not always calm others down; it may escalate it. I realized I could not always talk like the sun was shining bright everyday, sometimes I just had to listen and talk to the person in a way which could bring them down a notch.

I know my former employers all appreciated me having a willingness to help others and being positive about things. I definitely think everyone in any profession can benefit from being more positive at work and for going the extra mile even when nobody is looking. I know we all have to work as part of surviving in this world, but I personally want to work so I can help others and make a difference in the world. Making an impact on others has always been fun for me, but most importantly, doing the right thing always no matter what. 

What are your thoughts about being positive at work? Do you think it works well? What are some things you think others can do to be happier at work?

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