Red Adair (1915-2004), the man made famous by capping oil well fires, once said “If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.” This quote, attributed to a firefighter, has much relevance to the electrical industry; or any industry for that matter.
Companies are built by people who have the drive and tenacity to achieve greatness. Businesses at the same time are also doomed by people with good intentions but who can never rise above the average. Not only does it take great leadership, but those with the specialized sales, purchasing, marketing and back office roles are keys to success or failure.
Since virtually no companies in our industry are ‘not-for-profit’, there is very little tolerance for hiring the mediocre. It is vital to the survival of any company to hire the best people available. Hiring retreads or those with a questionable job history and reputation many times just does not pay off.
‘Amateur’ does not reflect a catch-all term that is negative. Instead it points to those who just haven’t (yet) risen to the rank of stellar or extraordinary. Everyone has started off as an amateur in our industry but not everyone reaches that rank. Some are just driven to continuously challenge themselves professionally and personally; while others are content to remain at whatever level they are comfortable in.
For success, there needs to be two types of personalities in any firm: 1) those that are working towards the next step in their careers and 2) those that are simply happy doing what they are doing. Maybe that employee decides that they want to become the best that they can in their particular role. It’s not a bad thing at all. But there needs to be that balance of rising stars and superstars.
Those that want to be a star do what it takes to be one. To excel in their careers, they will take it upon themselves to gain the knowledge and experience necessary to perform at a higher level. It could be formal education, extra training or certification; or possibly as simple as just pushing ones’ self to get to the next level.
These are the stars and future stars that companies want to hire. There is a huge demand for this type of talent and competitiveness. Those that continue upon a path to personal growth and achievement no doubt will be noticed and will attain greatness throughout their careers.