November 1, 2011

Crown Winners:  Lessons for Success in the Workplace Part 1

Rodeo queens and scholarship pageant winners wear smiles that match their sparkling crowns. The winners make the journey look easy and effortless; however, nothing could be further from the truth. In the first part of a three-part blog, we focus on Ann Clemmitt, Miss Rodeo Nevada 2011, who collaborated with us to share how the grit behind the glitter corresponds with success in the workplace.

Being Miss Rodeo Nevada is a job. Being the Queen is not a hobby, not a beauty pageant, and not just a passion. It is a commitment to representing the professional sport of rodeo, the Silver State, and the Western way of life.

Clemmitt appears in rodeos all over the country. Traveling by airplane or car, she has logged over 6,000 miles since April 2011. As it is not practical to haul her own horse, one of the Queen’s requirements is the ability to handle, ride and control any horse the stock vendor provides. How does that skill translate to success in the workplace?

Horses are just like people. They have their own personalities and quirks. Some are motivated and eager to work, while others are indifferent and prefer to eat grass in the pasture. Understanding a horse’s mindset is critical. For example, one of the Queen’s rodeo tasks is the Hot Lap. She rides a horse at a fast and furious pace around the arena as her introduction to welcome the audience with a visual “we’re excited to have you here.” An indifferent horse would fail its job. By taking time to learn about her mount, the Queen can use her knowledge, skills and talents to prepare a plan to get the horse energized and ready to work.

Rodeo is a unique and dynamic sport because you are dealing with an animal partner. Just like people, animals get sore, irritable, and drag their hooves into assignments. Things happen. Riders learn to be very flexible and work through problems; requesting help from a trainer with more knowledge is encouraged. Champions never give up and never quit.

Employee, before heading into the chute of a new assignment, gather as much information as you can about the context of your task. Use knowledge, skills, talents and research to plan a strategy. Start with your end date and work backward to create targeted milestones. Ask for help if you don’t have the answer to a problem. When working with a team, be prepared for contrasting personalities. Be flexible and open to suggestions. Take time to know what motivates you and each individual on the team. Find a way and take the steps to get you and the team energized and ready to work.

We continue next week with Rodeo Team Sorting, 4H and Toastmasters


Written by Ann Clemmitt, Miss Rodeo Nevada 2011 and Susan Fix , The Applied Companies Community Liaison Partner.  Clemmitt is employed by Apex Performance Solutions and working towards receiving her Project Management Certificate. Fix has worked 15 years in staffing services performing outside sales, recruiting, permanent and temporary placement coordination, career counseling, customer service and social media/business.

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