Attitude is everything.

It’s a common theme heard around every office, locker room or parent-child conversation in a home. Attitude can be the difference between success and failure before even one item is checked off the list.

That’s the main idea behind PRiDE (Personal Role in Designing Excellence) — Parkhill, Smith & Cooper’s newest internal class being offered that continues to help invest in its employees and the workplace environment. The class’s mission statement is simple.

“If you are waiting on people to ‘get it,’ you are falling short of your potential. Success begins with ownership. Embrace the issue. Live like it’s a reflection on you – because it is.”

Ownership became the clear principle in the class after taking it this past month. The class was developed by PSC employees as part of their group project after graduating from PSC’s Leadership Academy.

“When it came time for our Leadership Class to determine a class project, several ideas were mentioned,” said Kristi Laverty, PE, one of the class’ co-founders. “A recognizable commonality between all of the ideas was relative to the concept of ownership and how it had impacted each of us throughout Leadership Academy. Our desire was to expose the importance of ownership at the core and reveal how it starts with each individual.”

PRiDE serves as a type of introduction into some of the same philosophy and principles that are learned during the year-long Leadership Academy. This one happens on a much smaller scale – one day – and tries to help employees establish where they are with their attitudes and demeanors in the workplace and what they can do to get to where they want to be.

The class size ranges from 8-12 people at a time and includes a range of self-awareness tests, group work and workplace-defining exercises. Much of that, itself, can be interpreted depending on each person’s willingness to participate during the class. But that’s part of the overall goal as well – break from the mold.

“The goal is to change PSC’s culture,” said Bradley Blount, PE, one of the co-founders of PRiDE. “To make PSC have a culture of people who are willing to take a risk and take ownership of the things around them.”

But the part that had the biggest impact on me was the introduction to the BOVC Square.

“We’re still thinking of a better name for it,” Laverty said with a laugh.

The square focuses on four quadrants – Blame, Owner, Victim, Complain. Now which quadrant one finds themself in depends on two factors – a willingness to change and leadership skills. The curriculum helps each participant identify which quadrant they find themselves in and how they can get to the ultimate goal – Owner.

Owning one’s attitude, actions and recognizing how to move forward to benefit themselves and those around them are just some of the takeaways from the class.

“Other initiatives have been unsuccessful due to no buy-in,” Blount said. “I say this because I used to be part of the problem. I was one that helped things fail. This course is to encourage employees to take ownership of initiatives in order to help them succeed.”