I do try not to rant when I’m pounding the keyboard writing this stuff. But what can you do when you’re a passionate individual and doing one’s best to tackle the issues of the day? Sometimes I just can’t help myself.
One of the subjects that pretty much lights my fire every single time is that of the good old work ethic. My father gave it to me, although I don’t think he ever set out to do so in a structured way. He simply went quietly to work every single day, and never complained. We weren’t rich by any means, but I never wanted for anything, and there was always food upon the table. He may not have realised the strong example he was setting, but I took it all in.
Nothing worth having comes easy in this life, and a sense of entitlement without the drive to make it all happen is a first class ticket to disappointment. I wonder sometimes if a contributory factor is the rise of reality shows, and programs like X-factor in which people are plucked from obscurity and made into stars. I friend of mine was talking the other day about his nephew who had pretty much given up on school. He no longer respected his uncle’s work ethic, and desire to provide for his family. He’d decided instead that his future lay in internet super-stardom. Oh and get this, he didn’t have any discernible talent and no clue as to what his niche would be. In fact he had no plan at all.
I just don’t get it. Opportunities are out there, but you have to graft to make them happen. 99% of the time you have to be prepared to create your own breaks.
The advice I gave to my son, was to get noticed. To do that, you volunteer for every crappy job that no-one else wants, and you do it well. Become proficient in every aspect of a business, and you become the person that people come to to get things done, a problem solver. Boy did he listen, and at age 19, he set himself up as a self-employed contractor working at a dock. He got himself noticed and was offered numerous opportunities before settling for a career in the wind industry.
I’m proud to say he did it all on his own. He didn’t want to saddle himself with a shed load of student debt, and made a decision to forge his own path, based on is own merits.
I get so frustrated when youngsters are presented with the same old line. Finish school, go to university, and the world will literally fall at your feet…..except it won’t, and what’s more they’ll be lucky to make minimum wage. Where’s the imagination? Where is the effort to notice each and every youngster’s potential, and guide them towards something that fits their skill base?
Uni is great for some, less so for others, and at the end of the day both options will only pay dividends when approached with a healthy dose of good old fashioned work ethic. Either way they’ll learn how to be self-sufficient and resourceful.