Have you ever wondered why some people in an organization have bad attitudes?
Have you ever seen a sports team fall apart when things don’t go their way or after they get a bad break?
It all comes back to their attitude. So why do people develop a bad attitude? Let me share what I witnessed recently that may shed some light on the subject. I was at a nine and ten year old baseball game. Before the game started I noticed a player who looked like he had a lot of potential and athletic ability. The other thing I noticed was he was very confident. Athletic ability and confidence usually is a combination for a great ball player. My dad would call it “cocky”.
This kid started out pitching. During the middle part of the game a few breaks went the other team’s way. You could tell it frustrated the player and the coach (his dad). The coach began arguing with the umpire behind the plate about the strike zone. Soon so did the player. The coach asked for time and went to the mound. He told the player to stay calm and to not argue with the umpire. As the coach was walking back to the dugout, he had a snide remark for the umpire.
The player’s attitude got worse and the team ended up making a few errors, walking batters, and with a sour attitude the whole time. They lost the game but more importantly they didn’t learn from the loss. The reason for their loss was the attitude of the team, not because it was someone else’s fault. They developed a victim mentality. The loss was their fault and not someone else’s. And it all started with the coach.
An organization will always take on the personality of its leader. If you have a negative attitude, so will your people. If you own your mistakes, so will your people. If you accept the bad breaks and move on, so will your people. If you are a victim, so are your people. If you cause more problems than you solve, so will your people. What kind of leader do you want to be?
I’d like to end with dialog from one of my favorite movies.
Bertier: Listen, I’m Gerry, you’re Julius. Let’s just get some particulars and get this over with.
Julius: Particulars? Man, no matter what I tell you, you ain’t neva gonna know nothing about me.
Bertier: Listen, I ain’t running any more of these three-a-days–
Julius: Well, what I got to say you really don’t wanna hear ‘cuz honesty ain’t too high upon your people priority list.
Bertier: Honesty? You want honesty? Honestly, I think you’re nothing. Nothing but a pure waste of God-given talent. You don’t listen to nobody man. Not even Doc or Boone. Shiver push on the line everytime and you blow right past ’em. Push ’em, pull ’em. do something. You can’t run over everyone in this league and everytime you do you leave one of your teammates hanging out to dry, me in particular!
Julius: Why should I give a hoot about you? Huh? Or anyone else out there? You wanna talk about a waste, you the captain, right?
Julius: Captian’s supposed to be the leader, right?
Julius: You got a job?
Bertier: I got a job.
Julius: You been doing your job?
Bertier: I been doing my job.
Julius: Then why don’t you tell your white buddies to block for Rev better because they have not blocked for him worth a plug nickel, and you know it! Nobody plays. Yourself included. I’m supposed to wear myself out for the team? What team? Nah, nah what I’m gonna do is look out for myself and I’ma get mine.
Bertier: See man, thats the worst attitude I eva heard.
Julius: Attitude reflects leadership, captain.
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