Jan 2007 Character Quality -- Enthusiasm
the following editorial article was written by Gloria Cooper for publication in The Paris News --
“Okay employees, the CEO is coming to evaluate us, and we have one week to prepare.”  The
room fell silent as the manager made this announcement.  As he laid out details of how to
prepare for this change, the employees exchanged glances.  Did they really need a company
makeover?  This sounded like it would be more trouble than it was worth.  As the manager left
the employees to discuss the proposition, one man spoke up.  “We can knock these major
details out in a day or two if we put everything we’ve got into this.  Just look at this company a
year or so from now and see if this project won’t be worth it then.”  As he enthusiastically shared
his ideas with his co-workers, the excitement in his voice was contagious.  Before long, everyone
decided that this venture would be something to look forward to rather than shrink back from.  

Enthusiasm is expressing joy in each task as I give it my best effort.  Joy is different from
happiness.  Joy depends upon peace in the heart.  Happiness depends on present
circumstances.  Peace of heart comes as we build loyalty to the cause in which we are involved.

We build this loyalty through knowing what our purpose is.  To be enthusiastic about a subject,
we must have a clear direction.  After we receive our marching orders, we need to treat every
task as important.  In reality, scrubbing floors is just as important as closing huge contracts.  
Both jobs reflect on the company.  Because each job is important, we should do our best.  
Those who cut corners just to “get out of it quicker” lose the objective of their work.  These
shortcuts lead to excess work later.  

Finally, enthusiasm overcomes discouragement.  In every great project, disappointments are
sure to surface.  Instead of becoming depressed, we need to keep our eyes on the goal,
evaluate our tactics, and continue pressing on. Nobody ever accomplished anything with “It can’t
be done.”  In America, “can’t” is a bad word.  

Enthusiasm is as contagious as a smile.  When one person becomes excited about something,
their family or co-workers will get excited as well.  People who motivate others to complete a
project or stay on the course are energy-givers.  They bring joy to others.  We can do the same
in our families as they see life and light because of our enthusiasm. That is how influential we
should be as we exhort others to higher standards and good works.
Portions of this article have been adapted from Character First! material.  For more information about the
Character First! program and resources contact:  Character Training Institute, 520 W. Main Street, Oklahoma
City, OK  73102,  (405) 815-0001. Visit the Character Council of Red River Valley at
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