Sunday, May 29, 2016

A trait much sought after


IT is a fact that motivational writers, speakers and authors always include “enthusiasm” as one of the elements of success in life and business. 

Ralph Waldo Emerson, the American philosopher and poet, once said: “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” 

Another author, Joe Girard, in his book, Mastering Your Way to the Top, advised us to look for enthusiastic people. 

What is enthusiasm? According to Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 8th Edition (2010), enthusiasm, a noun, is a strong feeling of excitement and interest in something, while enthusiastic, an adjective, is the eagerness to become involved in something. 

Having said this, I believe it is useful for us to get ideas from famous authors who have written books on the subject. One such author was Napoleon Hill, who gained fame with his book, A Year of Growing Rich.  

The following model, which is mentioned in the book, can be used as an evergreen example.

Carol Downes gave up his job at a bank to join a recently formed car company owned by W.C. Durant. Checking for a possible promotion after six months, Downes met Durant and asked how he could improve his services, and what his virtues, faults and weaknesses were. 

Finally, he asked: “What position higher than my present one am I qualified to hold?” 

Durant was pleased with Downes’ enthusiasm. He replied: “You are hereby appointed to supervise the installation of machinery and equipment in our new assembly plant, with no promise of either promotion or increase in pay.” 

Durant gave Downes a series of blueprints, showing where the machinery was to be installed, and said: “Here are the instructions for you to follow. Now, let’s see what you can do with them.”

With no training in engineering, Downes could not understand the instructions. But, he found the right party to do the job. He hired an engineering firm to supervise the installation under his direction and paid the fee out of his own pocket. 

One day, as he walked to Durant’s office to report that the job was completed a week ahead of schedule, he passed a row of executive offices. He was shocked to see that one of the doors was lettered: “Carol Downes, General Manager.” 

Durant told him that he had been promoted with a pay rise. “When I gave you that blueprint, I knew you couldn’t read them. But, I wanted to see how you would handle the situation.” 

Enthusiasm is an acquired trait.

 Enthusiasm, one of the key elements of success, is an acquired trait

Shah Alam, Selangor 

Ahad, 22 Syaaban 1437H