Charles Schwab said, “A person can succeed at almost anything for which they have unlimited enthusiasm.”
Merriam-Webster defines enthusiasm as “strong excitement about something: a strong feeling of active interest in something you like or enjoy.”
Vince Lombardi said, “If you aren’t fired with enthusiasm, you’ll be fired with enthusiasm.”
I’ve had the joy of working with managers who expressed their enthusiasm in very different ways.
It was 1981. My first job was at the local Burger King. My boss believed the way to motivate teenagers was to crack a whip. She was a short woman who resembled a prize fighter. Her hair was short cropped. Her eyebrows spent much of their time pointing inward toward her nose which was wrinkled by the fire of determination. Her barking voice rang in my ears at high volume, carrying messages that pressured me to be better because everything I did wasn’t good enough.
We did our jobs if for no other reason than to keep her quiet. Some of us were afraid to stand up to her because we’d be assaulted with angry, defiant words that would singe our hair off. Others just let her insults roll off their backs because they didnt care about the job that much.
Turnover was high. Morale was mediocre at best. We all celebrated when we were scheduled a shift without her.
Several years ago, I worked at Toys R Us as an overnight stocker. The first manager I met was fired with enthusiasm. He expected us to do our jobs and do them well. He smiled profusely, laughed often, and didn’t worry one second when we messed up. Instead, he’d show us a better way with the full expectation that we could do it. If I asked for help a dozen times, his smile never faded and his zeal never diminished.
It was amazing how much we all got done that night.
Enthusiasm makes the difference when you’ve got ten hours to do twenty hours of work. If you don’t have it, you’ll throw up your hands in despair, let your anger get the best of you, and fail to use what resources you have to the full. If you have it, you can feed five thousand with five loaves of bread, turn mountains into piles of rubble, and run a marathon before breakfast.
Or at least it will seem like it.
If you want to succeed, you’ve got to have enthusiasm. If you want others to help you accomplish your vision, enthusiasm will win them over. If you want to make it through a marathon, enthusiasm is the fuel that will keep your tank full.
Rise up and greet every day with enthusiasm. You’ll be amazed at what you accomplish.