We spend a lot of time on skills. Rithmetic, Reading, Riting, doing well on the test, raising our batting average, showing up at soccer practice… if it’s easy to measure it, we’re busy measuring it.
But when it comes time to make a decision about someone else, we focus on their attitudes first. We’d prefer to work with someone who is honest, resilient, engaging, positive, trustworthy, clear-thinking and creative.
We’re not born with these attitudes. We learn them.
Like all skills, they’re a choice.
Why do we let ourselves off the hook?
By creating a special category for attitudes, we treat them as a magical gift, one that somehow simply appears. But we know that this isn’t the case — that we expect other people to do the hard work of bringing a good attitude to their work, and that means we can do it as well.
If attitudes are skills, it means we can learn them. We can improve them. And yes, even though it’s difficult, we can measure them.
“When you sign a contract as a player, you need to understand that you don’t sign to play, you sign to train.” That’s from Mauricio Pochettino when he was managing Tottenham Hotspur.
Our attitudes respond to training. They’re part of our practice.
We can either decide that we are destined to do whatever we’re programmed to become. Or we can take ownership of the journey and realize that we become whatever it is we care enough to do.
[Use the comments to share an attitude that you changed — simply because you decided it was worth the effort. All part of our Practice.]