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I’m Sick of Hearing About Your Passion!

Yes, I sure am!

I talk to a ton of job seekers and in most cases at some point they tell me about their passion for their jobs. To be honest, sometimes; I ask them what are they passionate about. But truly, I’m kinda sick of hearing the word passion.

You ever watch the Shark Tank on ABC? It’s a reality based show where entrepreneurs pitch their life changing ideas to 4 high successfully million and billionaires. The most famous and notable being Mr. Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA franchise the Dallas Mavericks. There was an episode where Mark was trying to get this entrepreneur to tell him why he should invest time and money into their company and he said something to the effect of “Tell me what separates you from the competition and if you say you’re “passionate”, I’m out.”!! Sounds harsh? Maybe not.

Also I like to watch the Food Network (don’t judge) and they have a competition show called “The Next Food Network Star”. Bobby Flay and Alton Brown are judges and they put together a reel of footage featuring contestants all saying that food was their passion or they were passionate about food – (YAWN!)

Passion is basically the new objective statement on a resume – boring, tired and widely abused. Everyone is passionate, right?

I like the word passion but it’s meaningless if you don’t back it up with work. Let me give you an example. I’ve had the pleasure of hanging out with and watching my good friend Tiffany Kuehl, you may have heard of her – she is a contributor to PIC as well, during 3 SHRM conferences this year. Before I saw her in action, I had heard from others that she’s dynamic at these HR conferences. She’s all over the place documenting the events, taking pictures, sending tweets and engaging in conversations with attendees.

I witnessed it first-hand in Baton Rouge in April, then again in Missouri in August and lastly, at the Tennessee State SHRM Conference in Knoxville in September. There she was, as advertised, taking selfies with speakers, documenting awards and recognitions, engaging vendors, exhibitors and volunteers. She owned it. 

Here’s the point. Tiffany is passionate about SHRM, Human Resources, Talent Acquisition, Recruiting, Social Media and connecting with people. She never says it though. She just does it. Her passion is proven in her work.

So how about you? Are you passionate about your job? Okay then show me instead of telling me. If I asked your employees would they say you have a passion for your job? If I looked at your organization would I see your impact?

Hey, did you hear about the CEO who was fired and his employees organized a work stoppage until he was reinstated? Read more here. Now that’s how you make an impact. Or how about the CEO who retired and the entire organization sang Aloe Blacc’s “I’m the Man” to him. Here’s the video. 

Here’s another question for you, if you lost your job tomorrow and no one else would hire you, how would you show your passion? You may be thinking, You can’t show passion without a job – you dummy! To which I say “Oh really? I don’t have a traditional job!”  I am a consultant, I have several bosses but I am not part of any one organization. I was able to create business relationships by showing my passion for HR through hard work. Check my record if you don’t know.

Back to the point. Your company needs you to perform at a high level if you want to win the war for talent, engagement and keeping a competitive advantage in the market place. Stop saying you are passionate about work and start showing your passion while at work.

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2 thoughts on “I’m Sick of Hearing About Your Passion!

  1. Great post! It’s true that people often feel that passion sets them aside. Though it is pivotal that founders have passion, it isn’t unique. It doesn’t make a business work. So what are the ingredients that make a company great and a leader awesome? I’d read that follow up article.

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