Compering a couple of conferences last week for uber-coach Russell Amerasekera reminded me of the importance of identifying our own truth. Russell left corporate life when he was at the top to pursue his most important values in his work. One of which is that we should play without fear.
So without further ado folks, cast your doubts aside, please, to play… Spot Your Talent.
Find Your Flow
What activity engrosses you so you forget about yourself, time flies and from which you get a huge sense of satisfaction? (ignore the carnal). This activity will have defined your best memories of performing well. Is this activity permitted/encouraged/endorsed at work? Are you doing enough of it there?
Position Your Flow
Are you linked to the best people to get this activity and what it produces, valued? You may be the most amazing computer programmer in the world, but if you seek a role in a limited geographical location – somewhere like Wales, say – you may be severely thwarted. Just on the basis of density of population and type of labour activity. No one might recognize a need for your ability. Where and who we hang out with matters a great deal. Penelope Trunk writes about these cultural influences in the US in her post ‘Shortcuts to a big life decision’.
Grow Your Flow
This may be a lifetime pursuit. And we are lucky today , because if our physical location frustrates us – too much bureaucracy, not enough edgy people, insufficient opportunity for creativity – then we can seek to address this in vast and varying locations online. We can reach people and interests virtually who we might never otherwise engage with.
Freud said Love and Work mattered most; and finding meaning in both of these may be our grandest motivators.
The Talent Zone
Sport psychologists often call flow being in the zone. You can read more about it here. It is the state where we perform to our optimum – and where we forget about clocking off, unfairness of our hours and that we should be paid more for what we are doing. Where a lot of your team/workforce are in flow, you get high performance.
And talent? This can be dangerous word in organizations. Enron was a ‘talent culture’, which meant no one thought they should learn anything and most people defended their reputation above all else. In the talented people I know I see three dynamic qualities: they venture deep into their quest for flow, they work hard and they deliver.
It’s not rocket science, is it?