When Did Attitude Become a Skill?

I know for sure that this hasn’t always been the case.  My parents and grandparents did not see Positive Attitude as a skill.  It was something you had, or faked, while at work.  You didn’t question it, it was a given.  You either showed up with it, or you got sent home to find it!

I’m now, seriously, hearing from hiring managers who only skill they desire from a candidate is someone with a positive attitude!

No, Tim, I don’t need someone who can do the job. We can show them that part. I just need someone who actually shows up to work and seems to like being here, working, making money, helping the company, our customers and their fellow employees.

By the way, these aren’t $12 an hour jobs.  These are professional, you can make a good living, with benefits and retirement and manage people, level jobs!  Career level jobs!

Here is all anyone really has to do today to get hired by, keep and have a long successful career at most companies:

1. Show up to work, almost every day.

2. Come across to others that you actually like your job and the company you work for.

3. Don’t be an asshole to your boss, coworkers and customers.

4. Be slightly positive about what the future holds for yourself and others.

5. Don’t be creepy.

1 + 2 +3 + 4 + 5 = a great career and multiple employee awards!

Yet, most people in the world can’t even come close to meeting the expectations I’ve listed out above.  Not. Even. Close.

Positive attitude is not a skill. It’s a basic human trait that all of your employees should have.  If they don’t, please give them the gift of finding this ‘skill’ working for another employer.

Also, don’t give me some crap about having a bad day.  Everyone has bad days, weeks, months and years.  It doesn’t change the fact that you need to show up to work and put on a positive front. Look, I don’t care if its real or fake, and no one else does either! Just do it. Here’s a little secret, none of know that your faking being positive, and even if we did, we really don’t care! We like hanging around positive people, more than negative people.

Attitude is not a skill. I refuse to allow it to be!

3 thoughts on “When Did Attitude Become a Skill?

  1. Everywhere I’ve ever worked I’ve seen tons of people come in with those skills and have them killed by really bad management. I’ve seen manager scream insults at employees. I’ve seen managers take very skilled programmers and turn them into data entry people. I once saw a manager require an employee to move across the country and then basically make them a personal assistant instead of the project manager job they were hired for.

    It’s hard to have a positive attitude when managers seem intent on destroying employees just for laughs.

  2. This post was passed along by a co-worker and I find the premise unsound.

    I would disagree and argue that attitude is in fact a skill.

    Just as running, jumping, coding, or swinging a hammer are skills that require practice and learning, so is behavior and thus attitude.
    (As we only see the attitude of others through their own behavior)

    Just as a bad hammer swing or inefficient gait can be coached, corrected, and developed, so can attitude.

    Attitude, more precisely, putting forth a positive attitude to diverse company in challenging times, is most definitely a skill that one must develop and keep sharp.

  3. I can see these being good skills to hire someone straight from college without the skills. However, having these being the mainstay for mid-career pros is amazing; but reality. These are not the standards I was raised on; you needed to bring value (tangible) as well. Talent shortage doesn’t mean compromising what a company needs to advance forward.

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