Talent, the ability to learn a task quickly and well, is the best way to meet endless learning challenges. Michelangelo exemplified such talent: He possessed aptitude, acquired knowledge and skill, plus the motivation to solve problems for his employers.
Before job seekers can successfully decide on a career and find an employer, they must know both their field and their function. Too often, students can only name a major interest area, when they also need to pinpoint their primary ability.
Dr Winner offers three behavioral markers to identify talent in children: precocity, rage to master, and march to their own drummer. Famous gifted individuals—Gauss, Michelangelo, and the Bronte sisters—illustrate what each marker means.
In our specialization-of-labor economy, individuals need to do what they do best in order to earn a living wage. Your child’s talent is her own unique version of a big, strong athletic body, unstoppable on the basketball court.
An example of how mentors developed a strength. My son’s talent with IT was discovered in junior high and mentored throughout school and work, helping him to find identity, community, life direction, and employment.
In fifth grade, I was excluded from band due to low musical aptitude. I share the history of the hurt and reflections on what those limits meant to me (and what similar weaknesses could mean for career planners).
A footrace is used as a metaphor to illustrate strong versus weak performance. In the fast/high and slow/low ranges, differences in skills are visible to others and will affect career success. Strong, competitive work performance will create job security.
Anecdotes about two widely different shoe salesmen illustrate why it’s important to consider greatest strengths (and weaknesses) when choosing a career. Besides, some employers ask job applicants to submit to pre-employment testing before they hire.
A eulogy for Dick Bolles, the author of What Color is Your Parachute? He played the role of talent mentor for me, when I was writing The Career Guide for Creative and Unconventional People. He opened doors, providing a good example for all mentors.
The bad news? Ambitious US students don’t know how to to get their dream job. Their ambitions are not aligned with their educations. The good news? This online career planning resource offers user-friendly information leading to career success.