This weekend I had an incredible time with my son and 5,000 other Boy Scouts at Peterloon. This isn’t a post about scouting, it’s about talent.
You see, this weekend my son was the “Senior Patrol Leader” meaning that he was in charge of the entire weekend. He made sure everything was packed, ready to go, the camp was set up and the boys/adults had a productive time during the event. He had to organize activities, keep track of details, encourage great behavior and address behavior that was a little more “challenging.”
During the camp tear down, I was about to “direct” some scouts to take care of things, when my son stepped in and said, “Dad, that’s not what we’re going to do. That’s not a good use of our time. I want to see the boys move the dining flies, tear down the chairs and then put things in the trailer. Then we’ll eat. We need to get these things done so we can stay on track.”
Did I mention my son’s 15 ??
This is the same young man who has done all of the goofy things boys do. He’s incredibly funny, creative, witty and caring. I am sure he will be successful in whatever he chooses to pursue. His ideas are so far out of the box as to how to approach people that he finds people following his lead and innovation.
Too often in organizations, HR follows the bright shining star who bursts onto the scene. Everyone follows this person exclaiming their talent and the gold mine of leadership that he/she is sure to be for years to come !! At times, this plays out. However, too often the supernova is just that – a super nova. They dazzle, draw attention and may do something short-term that astonishes everyone around and has great initial success.
Talent happens over a slow burn. Talent is sustainable. Talent is consistent and remains constant . . . over time.
So, when you clamor for the next “Talent Management” seminar or best practice, step back and review the employees around you. Who is that person or department that consistently builds others up? What person(s) make others shine through bringing their whole team along? Are you trying to develop a series of supernovas, or true talent?
I can’t wait to see what happens in the future for my son. I know it’s impossible to predict. He’s surprised me so far. I’m sure the great people around you will surprise you as well . . . if you just look out for the talent all around you !!