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Agrimarketing : January-Febuary 2010
16 Agri Marketing January/February 2010 It's easy to wake up grouchy and drag yourself into your job, feeling like you have to be there. But each day brings a chance to reinvent your- self and reform your attitude. A posi- tive attitude can have a tremendous positive impact. By adopting a posi- tive attitude, you can start changing lives. IT STARTS WITH YOU "Self-evaluation is the first step of improving your attitude," says Rodney Vandeveer, an associate professor of organizational leader- ship and supervision at Purdue University. "Ask yourself, 'How do I approach problems? How do I han- dle complaints?' Be honest with yourself about the way you come across to others. If you're not happy with it, you can change it." By taking an inventory of your current attitude, you'll begin to real- ize the effect you can have on other people, be it positive or negative. One of the simplest actions you can take to change your attitude is to change your mindset when approaching your problems. "Things aren't always going to be nice," says Vandeveer, speaking from his 30 years of business experience prior to becoming a professor. "They're going to be tough. But you can learn from the tough situations, so it's best to view them as an opportunity, rather than a problem." It's a gradual process: you start by changing the small things, and eventually you can apply your posi- tive attitude to more facets of your life. You can start by thinking of each day as an opportunity to impact other people's lives in a positive way. Instead of telling yourself, "I have to go to work today," tell yourself that you get to go to work. CREATING A POSITIVE ENVIRONMENT Attitudes are feelings and beliefs that largely determine how people perceive their environment. Your attitude eventually leads to your behaviors and actions, which affect your relationships with other people. Vandeveer explains that relation- ships are at the core of our profes- sional lives. All business interactions are the result of relationships --- from the relationship between a manager and an employee, to the relationship between a salesperson and a com- pany, to the relationship between a supplier, a vendor, and a company. In order to take control of your environment, you have to be aware of how you impact other people and of the relationships you're creating. When Vandeveer was a plant manager, he kept a calendar with the month and day that each employee had started their job. On each employee's anniversary, he thanked them for another year spent with the company. With this small action, Vandeveer showed his employees that they were important to the company and that their individual contributions were truly valued. Like Vandeveer, you can create a positive environment by being aware of the people with whom you interact. GIVE AWAY YOUR POSITIVE ATTITUDE There are many ways to give away your positive attitude, like being positive around those whom you have daily contact, being a sensitive listener so others can regain their positive focus, and laughing more so your attitude will be infectious and others can pick it up. Putting these principles to work in your life can have a tremendous effect on people's lives. "The attitude you have is yours," Vandeveer says. "The choice you make is yours. Choose the positive attitude, and show your leadership to others through your attitude." AM GIVE YOURSELF AN ATTITUDE MAKEOVER by Kristyn Kapetanovic Sales and Marketing Insights from Purdue University SEMINARS Upcoming Agribusiness Center for Food and Agricultural Business Sales Management and Leadership June 3-4, 2010 Precision Selling: Building Relationships with Large Farmers June 10-11, 2010 Learn more at www.agecon.purdue.edu/cab Kristyn Kapetanovic is the marketing assistant at the Center for Food and Agricultural Business at Purdue University. She can be reached at kristyn@ purdue.edu. Kapetanovic HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR ATTITUDE 1. Use humor --- by developing your sense of humor, the more positive you will become. 2. Play your winner! Don't go broke promoting the losers! 3. Get rid of unused and under- appreciated possessions. 4. Avoid having too many involvements. Learn to say no. 5. Gain balance between career and family. 6. Don't procrastinate and keep distractions around. 7. Eliminate negative friends. 8. Look better to yourself. 9. Clarify your mission. 10. Take charge of your destiny --- if you don't, someone else will.
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