Talent is defined as a “natural aptitude or skill”. Talent is personal. It may be seen to have been imbibed from the genes such as in the cases of certain hereditary skills. But hereditary skill does not manifest naturally in all individuals in a lineage. But we can see skill manifestation through lineage in very many fields of life. We know of Doctors’ children becoming doctors, goldsmiths born into goldsmith families, world-renowned clockmakers for generations. Skills or aptitudes need to be constantly practised and honed to perfection. But those that follow a profession by lineage are taught the skill and made to practice constantly to attain perfection. So evidently it is not inborn, it is derived through learning and perfected through practice. Hence the definition “natural” is a misnomer.
In everyday life, we need to apply various skills. Skills can be learnt and with a flair to learn and improve, lead to developing talents. The various skills that one learns for a living are not talents. Some are habits, some are just skills- like walking, balancing, swimming, cycling, singing is routine activities which almost everyone learns and persists until death. It is when these skills, knowingly are scientifical, practiced constantly with a purpose that they become talents. Talents are developed by diligent learning and application of learnt knowledge. The best example of talent is oration. It starts with flair to critically evaluate situations, gathering information, developing vocabulary and finding the appropriate occasion to deliver. Wit adds charm to oration. Public speaking has been perfected by many leaders whose words are just sufficient to move masses. Logical reasoning adds to the skill of oration which is the result of good communication skill which is a developed talent.
These skills or talents mark a leader. Hence if we plan a political life of leadership we need to ask ourselves if we are equipped with the right talents.
Any profession needs to be subtended by an appropriate talent the same way. But is everyone equipped with the right talent? The answer is usually a big “NO”.
Decision making is a skill that calls for the talent of collecting facts, analyzing them and applying them logically to arrive at a conclusion or action. Planning based on facts is also part of decision making. Good decisions get executed only through effective planning. Organizations depend on teams to effectively carry out decisions. The employees are expected to execute decisions and hence they engage people with special skills for the job. Any amount of skill or talent one has imbibed, when it comes to being an effective team player, it calls for skills of listening and analyzing ideas from all others. When taking up an assignment we need to consider this question of whether we are good at playing as a team. Only good team players are capable of becoming team builders and team leaders.
In any walk of life, professional or otherwise, our existence calls for specific skills or talents. Unless one has honed the skills specific to the job one is deemed to be a failure. Honing of skills involves learning, training and building a skill to apply the mind. A bad homemaker cannot get the family together. Once the realization dawns that one lacks a specific skill it is worthwhile to invest time and effort to train oneself. Unless one takes the pain and time to train the self, success can only be a mirage. Training the self involves a commitment to a purpose. The self without commitment cannot succeed.
So in the long run-up to life, we had better ask- Am I equipped with the right talent for my job and to make my life pleasant?