Pick A Side: Attitude vs Skill

Now that we enter the Lenten season of reflection, not just for Roman Catholics, but for all of us, it’s an opportunity to look back on our lives to help in our progress forward.

In February, I heard the Republic Bank Exodus Steel Orchestra’s Panorama 2020 composition at the panyard in Tunapuna. An exquisite composition written by Aaron St Louis and sung by St Louis and Kees Dieffenthaller, with an enthralling composition by the talented Terrance BJ Marcelle.

The pannists had practised the arrangement for weeks, playing late into the night and sometimes early morning. Many were working or attending school the next day and yet still returned the following night, ready and ready to go!

The talented orchestra features a range of steel instruments, tuned to perfection - guitar, bass, double-bass and tenor pans and at the heart, the rhythm section. I looked around the yard that night and saw a multitude of players - in age, aptitude and skill; yet everyone was focused on one goal - ensuring the arrangement was performed perfectly.

It made me think of our team at the HR department and our commitment to ensuring that we deliver results that ensure customer satisfaction, every day. Our people have a unique ability to combine knowledge, skill and a commitment to learning with a unique attitude of team work.

But what do you think is of greater importance - skill or attitude?

I have to lean towards having the right attitude - one of knowing that no one is too ‘big’ to perform even the seemingly smallest task. Similarly, the most inexperienced may be able to contribute to ensuring the ‘big’ ideas that create indisputably profound results.

Similarly, the late basketball star athlete Kobe Bryant once said, "I'll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it's sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot."

That enduring ability to assist the team, to sacrifice for the greater good, is key to all successful organizations. One can always learn and progress, but without an attitude of humility, respect, altruism and discipline, it’s all for naught.

And so to our pannists, our team players and our people, I pick the side that works together for the greater good. And the result is an incredible combination of fire and energy.

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