What separates a professional from an amateur?
Today’s nuggets come from an interview with a local professional. A great pro is the one who impresses us more by who she/he is than by what she/he does; the humility is greater than the amazing ability.
Here are the 7 nuggets we can learn from a professional:
1. Have a mentor. Many pros start early in life discovering the value of a parent, a teacher or a coach. Remember that teacher or coach that encourage and believe in you more than you believed in yourself? They had faith in you. Becoming a pro can’t be by chance, it is always a choice.
2. Surround and associate with people that help you to get better. Remember the buddy you had when you were playing a team sport? The one that could read your mind and you could read hers. A buddy or partner that values your strengths and complements your weaknesses has the power to propel you to new heights. As the old saying goes “iron sharpens iron”
3. Know what you want to become. Know where you are going. Vision is powerful when associated with clear pictures from your destination. Pros has clear pictures for their whole self; their mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual beings.
4. Leverage the power of practice and repetition. Master the fundamentals of your profession. How many shots have Tiger Woods or Michael Jordan hit to become who they are? Analyze the results and be open to feedback. People that are different than you can provide insights to help you become what your vision calls you to be, where your target or aim is directing you. See yourself as others see you. Know the importance of small improvements over time. Learn from every failure and every victory. Make, remake, and refashion yourself continuously.
5. Control your emotions or your emotions will get the best out of you. Be persistent and consistent. Tantrums have no place in the life of any professional. Keep self-esteem high by having results from serving others. As the medical pros say, mind those bedside manners or you will quickly get into trouble.
6. Know your customers, your clients; who you perform or serve. Make everything personal. Like the unlikables if you want to be surrounded by likables later in life. Be more and care more than your competition.
7. Make the painful bearable. No pain no gain as far as you, not your customers, are concerned. Have that entrepreneurial mind and know that there are things that you don’t like to do that you still must do. Have that mental toughness that makes you cool and collected when under pressure.
A great professional is much greater than his/her profession. They always give back more than they receive. Pros value the intangibles more than the tangibles. True pros make their problems smaller because they are always bigger than any problem they encounter.
Be blessed and be a blessing to others!
Carlos Fontana, President of Phalanx
Co-author of the book Follow to Lead (The 7 Principles to Being a Great Follower)
Author of the book PRICELESS (Sixty-Six Simple Stories of Reflection, Love, and Legacy)