(This is the third part of the series; to read the first two simply scroll down…)
After talking about misfits at a particular job and their reasons for being so....
Next in the book are various requirements: physical, intellectual, and emotional, required for various careers (for example, aggressive folks cant be expected to do peaceful tasks), and how to recruit the right people.
An excerpt: There are two distinct types of executives. There is the impatient, driving, quick, keen, positive, irritable type. This man can get good results from a certain type of worker, but he only irritates, frightens, and drives to sullen resistance other types. The other is the mild, kindly, persuasive, patient, enduring, persistent, determined type of executive, who wins his success by attracting to himself the intense loyalty and devotion of his men. Both types are successful, but they are successful with different kinds of men. The employer who selects executives, therefore, needs to bear this in mind.
Mention is made of a businessman in trouble and a “Socratic” personality consulted for his expertise. After a detailed tale, here is what Socratic recommends as six old-fashioned virtues that when cultivated will reap positive results.
1. The first virtue is Order. You waste time and energy because you let your
work push you instead of planning your work and then pushing your plan.
2. The second is Punctuality. You lose time, money, friends, temper, and will-power because you are vague and careless about making and keeping appointments.
3. The third is Courtesy. You have to be tactful and considerate towards others. You ask me to come and help you, and then tell me you are busy but sorry - that's patronizing. You ignore a caller and read papers on your desk, that's rude. You can't afford these in business.
4. The fourth is Economy. Your time is worth more to this business than that of all the staff put together. You spend it doing what a ten-dollar-a-week girl could do just as well, it is sinful extravagance. It wastes your time and hers. Worst of all, it undermines your self-respect and her respect for you.
5. The fifth is Honesty. Business must be done at a profit, but not with dishonesty, unfairness and greed. Give everybody a square, equal deal. That will build confidence and increase trade. And then you can leave your salespeople to wait on all customers, giving you more time for real management.
6. The sixth is Courage. It's easy enough to see obstacles, to make excuses, to procrastinate. When a hard task has to be done, fear not, and do it.
A dialogue between an engineer who hates his job and a caring friend:
Friend: "Well, then, why don't you do something else?"
Engineer: "I don't know what to do. I like mechanics, and some job of this kind is the only thing I know how to do or would care to do. Yet, I don't care for this. I must confess that I am puzzled as to what in the world I was made for, anyhow."
Friend: "What you need is to give your time and attention to the intellectual side of engineering rather than the purely mechanical and physical. You are of the intellectual type, find a job like that. Else, it's like you were an eagle trying to cross the country on foot.”
The authors apologetically admit that they offer no golden key to unlock the door to success. There is no magic way in which some wonderful, undiscovered talent can be discovered within a person and made to blossom forth in a night. There is no short cut to wealth / fame, and nobody else can guess your strengths or what you should do.
Two lovely paragraphs to sum it up…
If you are a worker and not a shirker, a lifter and not a leaner; if you have done your best to succeed in your present vocation, and are still dissatisfied, and feel that you could do better in some other line of work, determine your new calling.
If you have never attempted your best, never worked your hardest; if you have grown weary, and laid down your burden in the face of difficulties and obstacles; if you have neglected your education, your training, your preparation for success, then, before you make a change, before you seek vocational counsel, do your best to make good where you are. It may be the one vocation in which you can succeed.
A note is also made of the high cost of hiring and firing in organizations. A powerful thought: There is only one legitimate reason for putting any man or woman on the payroll, namely, that he or she is well fitted to perform the tasks assigned, will perform them contentedly and happily and, therefore, be a valuable asset to the concern. But with foremen, superintendents, and other minor executives selecting employees, for any reason and every reason except the legitimate reason, it is small wonder that employees grow discontented and leave, are demoralized and incompetent so that they are discharged. For these reasons it is an unusual organization which does not turn over its entire working force every year.
Final part coming up next week... Until then, ciao !!
Be well :-)