I just finished reading a book called Lone Survivor. It is the story of Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell. The book explains some of the grueling training to become a SEAL but the main part of the book is about Operation Redwing. Marcus and three other SEALs are tasked with finding a Taliban leader in the mountains of Afghanistan. While these four men were in the mountains, they were attacked by a large Taliban army. Marcus was the only surviving member of the group. To survive, Marcus had to travel steep mountain terrain with a leg that had shrapnel in it from a grenade, a torn rotator cuff, three cracked vertebrae, a broken nose, and a huge gash on his forehead. Then as he was escaping, he was shot by a sniper in the leg. He was then taken in by a small village who protected him until he was able to be rescued.
The training Marcus had to go through to become a Navy SEAL was amazing, the discipline and attitude that was displayed was inspiring. Then when they were under attack the attitude the team had almost brought me to tears. The other members of the team had been shot and severely wounded but were still fighting and would not give up.
How does this relate to business and employee perceptions? Recently, I was presenting results of a recent employee loyalty survey to a room full of executives. This was the first time they had done this survey and the scores were very, very good. However, the CEO sat back and looked at the head of HR and said, this is not good enough, we must get better. Wow, what an attitude. That is probably why they are an extremely successful company, it is their attitude that they are not good enough and they must not give up.
Contrast that with some companies where their loyalty is significantly lower, but they are content. They make excuses as to why the scores are where they are, or they just say the employees are negative and dismiss the results.
I also think about this in my own career. When I have setbacks or when the company makes decisions I don’t agree with, I can either throw a fit or make excuses, or I can put my head down and work harder and not let it change my attitude. If a guy can be shot, have broken bones, no food or water and still survive, it just shows the power of the human mind and what can be accomplished. So my point of this blog is we have a choice, each and every day, to control the attitude we bring to the workplace. And that attitude can then impact those around us, either positively or negatively.
So my question to you is, are you doing all that you can, with the right attitude? Or are you making excuses for not working as hard as you can? Executives, are you making excuses for the state of employee loyalty at your company or are you make a concerted effort to improve the culture of the organization every day?