As a musician, one of the most exciting experiences is the possiblity of working and performing with musicians playing different instruments and coming from diverse backgrounds. I am always excited to work with someone new, discover new practice methods and thought processes as well as share experiences. I have played with pianists from all over the world, Europe, Asia, United States, South America. Actually my sister is a pianist too and we perform regularly together since early childhood. While all my piano partners have their own strong personalities, I realised along the way that they all also share a number of qualities. Looking into it further, I came to the conclusion that they all possessed a similar mindset. This revelation was quite surprising at first but the more I thought about it the more I realised it has a logic of its own. All my piano partners had one thing in common. They were playing the same instrument, the piano. Playing the piano is quite different to playing the violin, guitar or any other instrument. Piano players, more than other musicians, need to be supportive, understanding, being able to see the big picture. These acquired skills are a result of the specifics of the piano and music composed for the piano.
I further asked myself, would this principle be applicable to my fellow violinists? Yes, I could easily identify qualities, skills and traits that singled violinists out. Stepping outside the music world, I reflected if this line of thinking is applicable to my friends, family members, colleagues and clients. Do not all my acquaintances from the banking world share similar, identifiable traits? Or were not accountants I hired or met in some way similar? The web and app developers I have worked with for sure shared a number of similarities.
Generalisation may be quite dangerous and more than often not exactly a good thing. However, discovering that people who are employed in the same profession do share a significant number of similarities, tells us how our professions form and partly define us. Furthermore, we may ask ouselves, why are we attracted to certain professions and not to others? I know since I was a child I wanted to play the violin and no other instrument. The violin has always been my medium of creative expression.
The realisation that individual professions do have their own mindset may help us understand the people we work and engage with. There is less miscommuncation and misunderstanding. Team members understand their roles better as well as roles and responsibilities of other team colleagues or colleagues within the whole company.
Can you identify similar qualities in your own profession? What mindset would you ascribe to your profession?
Look forward to your thoughts,
P.S. To discover, learn, understand and implement the correct mindset, sign up to our Music & Leadership online course. The course will help you learn how to identify your role and responsbility within the company and team, teach you to how to setup your own team and understand others.