I came in contact with two people yesterday that reminded me, no matter how experienced you are, how well educated, how much you accomplished–an extraordinary attitude can trump all of that.
As an executive recruiter, I’m certainly used to people feeling that an opportunity isn’t ‘just right’ for them and often rightly so. But just as often, I’m a bit surprised by people who are not employed being very picky about something that is presented to them. “I can’t fly coach”. “I’m not interested in a lateral move (irrespective of the situation)”. “I don’t want to travel once a month”. “I’d like a job somewhere between South Carolina and Florida but not further east than Louisiana”.
Today, I had lunch with someone I’ve known since my days at HP. He was recently displaced and is looking for his next opportunity. What amazed me about this person was his attitude. He was working in excess of forty hours a week in his quest for a new job. He was cold calling CEOs and introducing himself, with great results I might add. Geographically he was completely flexible and open minded. To any company that I mentioned as a target, his response was, ‘why not?’. What an upbeat, open minded, ‘can do’ person! I’m sure he’ll hand a job before the start of fall.
Later in the day I ran into an associate that I worked with circa ’93. She was interviewing for a role and she absolutely conveyed a ‘can do’ attitude. “I can do that”. “I can take that on”. “I can fix that”. What a gem–not only will she do all that but she will be a source of inspiration for the entire team.
Sure, experience matters. Talent matters more. But there’s nothing like a great attitude!