I am surprised any work gets done at all in UK business. There seems to be more “passion” in the workplace than a Jackie Collins blockbuster, Not that it’s all hearts and flowers – it’s just the business world certainly seems full of “passionate” people at the moment. I can’t seem to listen to a sales pitch or to a interviewee these days without them stressing how “passionate” they are about the role, business, life…etc… But when probed further for evidence of this brimming “passion”, examples have been pretty thin on he ground. Folks have clicked on that business’ needs passionate people to succeed, and thus talk about it to tick the box.
Real passion that can be harnessed for business benefit comes in several guises. The “Tigger” character from Winnie the Pooh generally has a fizz, energy and buzz about them, that boosts and positively infects people around them. These are the energised, lust for life, doers. Tackling everything with the same smile and gusto, from loading the photocopier to climbing Kilimanjaro. They don’t have to tell you they are “passionate” – their vibe is tangible. When recruiting look for people who spend their weekends out of their armchair and out there doing what ever floats their boat – the 5am car booters, the ramblers, anglers, trainspotters, needlecraft and guide leaders. Feel their vibe.
“Passion” also comes from the quiet man (or woman). Often the polar opposite of Tigger – focused, persistent, obsession in what they do. Find them in your office – they are dedicated, skilled and single minded. They are the ones who care deeply about what they do and usually gain expert status. The “quiet men” are harder to spot – when recruiting – look for someone who has a highly detailed knowledge of a specific field -star gazing, history of football league, Linux as true open source genius, and watch for the flame that ignites in their eyes when they talk about it.
Remember, passion is a feeling not a competency.