Passionate or Zealous: What Employers Look For

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Finding the right job in the equine industry isn't easy. While there is some growth in specific sectors of the industry, others are lagging behind in the slow national economic recovery. If you are trying to find a job (or you are looking to hire the "right" person), how important is "passion" toward horses? Will that help or hurt you in finding and landing that perfect job or hiring the perfect employee?

While every employer doesn’t know how to qualify or quantify it, they all want an employee with passion. Not too much passion, mind you, but just enough to be excited about the daily tasks and the sometimes mundane and trivial jobs that need to be accomplished to make the business profitable.

"That isn’t passion!," you might say. "Passion is when you would do the job even if you didn’t get paid! Passion means you can’t NOT do something. Passion demands, it doesn’t allow. Passion commits. Passion leads. Passion creates results."

Not necessarily. Keep in mind that passion sometimes causes you to fail because you only see the passion. Passion can turn people off. Passion can erase good memories with one bad experience. Passion can sometimes create the wrong results.

Passion is a strong, compelling feeling. Zeal is a fervor or intense emotion.

I would choose a passionate person over a non-passionate person when looking for an employee, because the passion will drive them forward even when things are dull, boring, or hard. But an overly zealous person can get out of control and be a detriment to your business.

When you are applying for a job, be passionate. When you are seeking the right employee, look for passion. But don’t let your passion rule over everything, and don't hire a person who is so passionate that they can't do what is right for your business.

There is a fine line separating the two.