A question that we hear a lot when discussing a persons “Talent Themes” is the question “How Can I tell I am working in a Talent?” The easy answer would be to use the analogy of kayaking on a river. When you are in a truly working in your talents, it is like being on a river, and kayaking downstream with the current. The paddling seems fairly easy (or fast paced and adrenaline-laced if that is how you like it) You have been thinking about the river for weeks, and now it is time for your journey. You are learning how to read the river well, and even if you have a spill or mishap, you are a quick learner, picking up clues from the river. Time seems to stop as you enjoy your journey down the river, and there are moments that you show some true river excellence! Camp is set on a quite, secluded sand bar and you are enjoying moments of greatness. Even the people you are traveling with are impressed with your “river prowess” and you all have a most incredible trip. The next trip is being planned in your mind before you even conclude the trip- you cannot wait for your return trip to the river.
Now, I could do another analogy where you are paddling against the current, the river comes up and floods your tent, and the story ends with you and your friends keeping warm huddled around a jet boil stove that is quickly running out of fuel and it is dark….but I will leave there!
So what are some clues to talent, even if you have not yet taken a Strength Finders Assessment?
- Yearning– What you are working on, it seems like you have been attracted to the task, job, activity. Matter of fact, this may be something you can draw from as early as your childhood.
- Rapid Learning– Talents are natural patterns of thought. The learning curve on things that involve talent are typically very short. Sometimes people say things like “They were born to do this” or “It just seemed so natural”. Many times when you are working in something that is a talent, it can be difficult to understand why others are not “catching on” like you are
- Flow– You start to work on a project that is talent based, and next thing you know, it is 4 hours later and you do not remember time or even where you are. You totally get into whatever you are working on- and this occurs most of the time
- Glimpses of Excellence– There are things that happen when you are working in your talents- special things. Moments of true excellence. Sometimes they come noticed, often they are not noticed- but they are there!
- Satisfaction– We like to call this the “Roller coaster effect” – once you get off the ride, you run back so you can do it again. That is what satisfaction will do to any working in their talents
People who work to develop talents into strengths build and grow potential. Working in talents will bring an authentic and real “you” to the most important river, the river of life. A strengths coach can help people and teams get unstuck, see new points of view, build awareness and act as a sort of mirror- in other words, help everyone on the team paddle “down stream”.
Here is to more “downstream paddles” both in business….and in life!