Today I had the pleasure of reading Good work isn’t enough by Greg Hoy. A magnificent read, centered upon attitude in the workplace, it got me thinking…

Why is attitude so paramount?

Attitude is infectious. It spreads like wildfire, and a few great (or not so great) demeanors can quickly change the dynamic of a project, or even an entire team. Greg touches on impassioned coaches in his article, and their positive attitudes. I can’t tell you how many times in my career a good attitude from someone has turned a bad day completely upside down for me, and brought me back to the light.

Greg also points out that a good attitude can go to great lengths when looking for a job:

The truth is, I have hired people based on their attitudes alone, and it’s rarely been a bad move.

I have found myself in the same boat in my career. During my tenure at American Eagle, I’ve interviewed countless people. If there is one continuity I’ve seen over the years, it’s this: The people with the best attitudes are the ones who make it. They are the ones who keep the team going during all nighters, or when the team is faced with a development bug that seems insurmountable.


Yes, I’ve hired people solely based on attitude, as Greg has. While good work is also something I look at, I finally look at a person’s “Activation.” This is a summation of how active they are in the web ecosystem. I am looking for someone who’s good attitude/work not only exists between 9 and 5. Someone who loves what we do; who is reading and writing on the very subjects we are building day to day. Here are a few things that go into this:

  • Do you have a personal website?
  • Are you on Github/Dribbble? If not, where are you sharing your creations?
  • Who are some web designers/developers that inspire you?
  • What web related meetups have you been to?
  • Are you on Twitter?

The fact that you use these avenues alone is enough to show me you care about our industry. Through these gateways, I can better gauge your overall attitudes as well.

We all know the web is constantly changing, bettering itself. I’m looking for people who are doing the same. Community involvement, like attitude, is infectious. One person can even change a team for the better.