High performance headlines
If you’re serious about using your talent and not just having it then:
- Your attitude will drive you to do things that will make you even better.
- You’ll be curious about how your talent is a starting place to help you achieve what you’re trying to achieve.
- You’ll be working hard to make the most of your talent, rather than coasting or relying on it.
- You’ll be interested in how you can use your talent and the talent of those around you to make each other better.
- You’ll be focused on making yourself better by comparing yourself to your previous performances or by helpfully comparing yourself to talented people around you.
The full viewpoint
We’ve worked with a lot of people in sport and business. One particular attitude constantly shown by the most consistently high performing is that they know their talent is not enough.
It starts with an attitude
If you want to make the most of your talent you’ll be curious about it. This will drive you towards seeking the answers to lots of useful questions. For example you’ll want to know where your talent can flourish. You’ll want to know how you can make adjustments to make the most of the talent you have. You’ll be curious about what’s possible when you start with your talent and then work really hard as well. You’ll want to know how good you can be.
It drives behaviour
Choosing to make the most of your talent will drive your behaviour. That means constantly considering and testing ways of doing things differently, seeking feedback and looking to alter your approach to see how you can go further, quicker, higher. You’ll be working really hard at the process of learning and preparation. You’ll be looking to understand what things you can focus on that will make a difference to your results.
Conditions and control
You can’t always choose the conditions or the result. You can’t choose the weather, the behaviour of other people or a whole lot of things. Making the most of your talent does mean taking control of your performance and focusing on the important factors that you can most directly influence. Including attitude, effort, learning and improvement. Waiting for the perfect conditions to make the most of your talent is not a high performance strategy. Performing at your best, whatever the conditions, is.
Using others to help your talent grow
It’s a cliché that the road to success is often long and hilly. It’s annoying and true. The chances are that you’re going to have ups and downs along the way, so the role of others will be vital. This means having people around you who can support you and who can challenge you. Having the talent to make the most of others’ talents is a talent in itself! Excellence is not a solo pursuit so tapping into the talents of those around you is essential.
Compare with care
If it’s helpful to compare you or your team with others, then do it. Otherwise don’t!
“Judge yourself not by what you have achieved but by what you should have achieved with the talent at your disposal” said John Wooden.
This attitude means that you’ll be competing with yourself to improve. Can you be better than the person that you were yesterday?
Your talent is your starting point. It’s the cards you were dealt and short of picking your parents and your upbringing it’s not going to change! But your experiences and your learning, who you meet and what you read, will shape you and make you the performer you are. Given the conditions you’re facing, you’re constantly making choices about what you do, don’t do, how you think and how you behave. All these choices will determine whether you make the most of your talent.
Choosing to make the most of your talent is one of life’s most important performance choices. Whatever hand you have, see what you can make of it by focusing on those factors that will make the biggest difference for you.