Saturday, September 5, 2009

Rigorous Responsibility 9/05/09

A good reputation may get you to the pitcher's mound, but it won't win the game.

DB - The Vagabond
Pick a number and have a seat.
There's an old saying in the radio business: "You're only as good as your last station break." To have a good reputation for anything means that people expect you to be consistently good. That's a big order. It means being good even when you don't feel like it, or when circumstances are not conducive to doing your best.

Having a good reputation is a result, not a cause. It comes about from having standards and sticking to them. It's the setting of goals and working hard to reach them. It means daily discipline in one's honest endeavors. It's being reliable and dependable.

But there's a warning to be found here. All of those efforts are good ones, but we must remember that a good reputation is what others think of us, not what we think of ourselves. It's the doing that matters, not the talk. I watched a young woman applying for a job. She listed her college degrees and what she knew how to do. The woman trying to hire her was skeptical because she had nothing to show for her work experience. As some other wise person once said, you don't build a good reputation on what you're going to do.

Finally the employer suggested and entry level position with both a job description and a salary lower than what the girl thought she deserved. I don't know whether she accepted the position or not, but I thought it was a good opportunity to show what she could do and start establishing a reputation for herself. Many people have done just that. If you go back into the archives you'll find many famous actors who played small roles in someone's film in the early days of their careers and impressed someone into giving them a larger role the next time around, both Marilyn Monroe and John Wayne to name two. (How many actresses turned down the part of the screaming captive in King Kong which Fay Wray eventually played and went on to have a long career in film and TV?)

A lot of people go for immediate stardom and success. And many of them achieve it temporarily. But it doesn't last if it isn't backed up by excellent work. Stardom may come overnight for a few, but a good reputation takes time and effort. The guy on the mound is only as good as his last pitch.

Happy weekend to you and yours.


Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Makes me think of the old axiom that "A man is only as good as his word". That harkens back to the days when deals were made with a handshake instead of a gaggle of lawyers. I am sure you can relate :o)

Bonnie Bonsai said...

Yes, that's about what others think of us for anything tangible we do favourable in their eyes.

I can exactly relate to this topic today. Just as I have been recently pondering, the character in us should also be taken into consideration by others besides our reputation.

"If we do good, no one remembers; if we do bad, nobody forgets" - that's a reply to Bucko's quote.

Have a safe weekend DB!