A New Aspect of Talent

Seth Godin’s Post: Your Alphabet   is a reminder to me about something that I thought while writing these two posts describing the aspects of talent IT Staffing Talent and IT Staffing Strategy Considerations.

These two posts talk about talent and about the impact of talent on IT Staffing Strategy.  Seth’s post reminded me of one definition or description of talent that I had removed from the prior posts because it didn’t flow or fit.  Sometimes talent is the ability to take skills or abilities that one has and combine, manipulate, repurpose, or bend them to accomplish something one does not have the “accustomed” abilities to do.

Another way to say this is – talent plays to its strengths, compensating for weakness, by adapting the tools available to the job at hand.  Talent pulls a MacGyver when necessary to get a difficult job done.

Godin talks about how many letters we have in our alphabet.  How we combine the letters to form words, and when we need new letters.

To grow, then, we only need to address two questions:

  • Do I need more letters?
  • How do I recombine the letters I’ve already got to create new value?

Chasing new letters is expensive. For most of us, a better first resort is to cherish the letters we’ve already got and be brave enough to recombine them into new forms, new approaches, new ways to add value. But yes, by all means, now that you’ve extracted maximum value, go get some new letters.


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