It’s common knowledge in the business world that without great people, it’s hard to build a great company. Of course, some things are easier said than done.
Aptitude and Attitude: Which one is more important?
At a basic level, aptitude is an inherent ability or skillset. Attitude on the other hand is a way of thinking, feeling or behaving. Finding people for your team with a balance of both is ideal, but which is more important?
It’s true, having the aptitude to perform a job effectively is necessary. Positive attitude alone won’t allow a you to perform in a job with high level skill requirements. But even a skilled vet won’t do your team any good without some enthusiasm for the job.
Hire for attitude, train for skills.
Bill Byham, president and CEO of Development Dimensions International and authority on molding great leaders, created a hiring methodology called Targeted Selection that does focus on this.
At its core, the methodology revolves around the idea that the best way to find people who will help your company thrive is to identify those on your team who are already doing just that—then seek out people with those same attributes. It’s possible to train your employees by providing the right tools and techniques. You can’t, and shouldn’t try to, give them a new attitude.
Trying to improve someone’s attitude is a lot more difficult (unless you have a handy degree in psychology) because it involves changing people’s deeply rooted behavior. Not to mention it’s next to impossible if said person has no desire to change.
A team with a positive attitude is a team that goes above and beyond
According to Barbara Fredrickson, professor and social psychologist, the more positive emotions people experience, the higher the chances are that they also exhibit positive workforce (and life) behaviors like curiosity, awareness, and creativity.
Overall, teams that are highly motivated and positive are not only fun to be part of, but they get a lot more done and are more likely to please customers than teams with low morale.
Cultivate A Happy Team
No matter how happy or chipper a person is, it’s impossible to keep that elevated mood day in and day out on their own. Aside from leadership style assessment, take the time to engage your employees. Makes sure you involve them in the company’s successes to create a sense of ownership.
Cultivating a continuous learning environment is also pertinent to a positive, happy employee. Encourage them to learn and grow by taking on different tasks and exploring their interests.
Communication is key in engaging your team as well. Be transparent in your vision and share both successes and failures along the way. In regards to communication, it’s also crucial to handle issues efficiently and as quickly as possible.
Get a right attitude and grow a stronger team
In an ideal world, you’d have a team full of employees with the perfect balance of aptitude and attitude. But this is reality we’re talking about. As you begin to grow your team and review your current team members, take into consideration their attitudes. Think about how they treat your customers, and whether they have the mindset to learn high level skills later on down the road.
At the end of the day these are the traits that will help you create a strong customer service team.