Every once in awhile, the Good Lord provides us with contrasting moments within a relatively short window of time. So close together, in fact, that we are able to quickly discern the antithetical extremes and make a decision as to which one fits and which one is something distant and unproductive.
I’m always intrigued by passion. People who have it are usually infectious to those around them. Granted, there is a fine line between heartfelt passion and over-the-top obnoxiousness. A passionate sports fan is easily distinguished from the drunk in beads that happened to get his hand on a ticket.
I met real passion this past Tuesday in a guy named Anthony. I could not get enough of this young man. As he talked, his positive attitude, love for his job and concern for his fellow employees were evidenced. His passion for serving the members and workforce of his credit union as “an IT guy” was refreshing. He spoke eloquently and with emotion about what he does and how he does it. After about a 40-minute drive with the adrenaline pumping and the theme from Rocky playing in my head, I jumped out of the car, hit the curb refreshed, motivated and ready to run through a brick wall.
Very shortly thereafter, I stepped into the airport terminal and the enthusiasm of the prior 40 minutes was swept away in a heartbeat by the apathy and bad attitude emanating from the aura that is US Airways. OMG! You talk about opposite ends of the spectrum. Anthony’s extreme passion and positivity vs. US Air’s bad attitude and apathy – in an instance, I was able to see the striking difference.
Anthony’s positivity prevailed, but the contrast of success versus failure was as evident as day and night. Sadly, the attitude of the US Air employees inside the terminal was just that – terminal. So bad was it that the employees at Gate 17 were fighting among themselves.
My guess is most people fall somewhere between Anthony and US Air. Might I suggest that if you choose to err, do so on the side of Anthony’s passion. One’s passion can go a long way to filling a gap in intellectual capacity or experience. To err on the side of passion in the world of service is to make a customer for life.
Give me Anthony, a small budget, a start-up idea and a market segment, and success is right around the corner. Give me a US Air employee, and I’ll be delayed, unappreciated and treated as a burden. Good for Anthony. Shame on US Air.