Should you be passionate about your work?

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“Yes. Passion is one of the basic elements you need to be able to do your job well. Whether it is sports, a musical instrument or work, without passion, you won’t get real fulfilment and become better at what you do.”

If you have passion, you will stimulate others. Your colleagues will want to work with you. You will probably be more creative than the average worker is. Clients will prefer you to a competitor because they see the passion behind your delivery. Business leaders want people around them who are excited and positive about their job. At the same time, employees are enthused if their leader has energy and vision — and also cares about the organization. There is an expectation today that recruits will be passionate. There are enough jobs out there, but employers are looking for the very best candidates to fill those roles. It’s a battle for talent.
Expectations work both ways: new recruits don’t just look for the money from their employers, but also purpose, health, happiness, flexible working, and professional and personal development. In order to succeed in any organization, however, you will need passion to stay one step ahead of the competition. You have to be resilient enough to make it through experiences, both good and bad. And you get this resilience through passion.

Passion often matters more than technical skills. Interactive skills and empathy are essential. The more passionate applicant is likely to be hired ahead of the experienced one. You can train skills, but a training attitude is problematic.

“Follow your passion” is still good careers advice. Not if you have zero ability for your chosen field, of course. But if you are really interested in something, if you love what you do and you are also talented at it, then you will be able to earn money in any field or job.

You have to work 40 to 45 years in your lifetime, and if you always work at something you dislike, it’s bad for your well-being. If you do what you love, your motivation, happiness, and physical and mental health will always be better.


Nils Richter, Managing Director at Halian


Published in Business Spotlight Magazine 11/2021