I am sure you remember those individuals in school who never had to open a book or study for a test. They somehow always got A’s, just by glancing over their notes right before the teacher handed out the test. They made Phi Beta Kappa in college with ease, while others struggled to even get honors. You may also recall those individuals, myself included, who had to study for everything. They would spend hours reviewing notes, making flashcards, and memorizing every little thing they could before an exam. If there was no preparation done on their behalf, it was definitely reflected in their grade, or in their overall end product.
I had to work hard all the way through college and into graduate school. Even now, as a worker in the workforce, I work diligently to ensure that I am handing in my best work. I would start my drafts well before they were due, and brainstorm various ideas before settling on a final piece that I was happy with. Eventually, and fearfully, I turned my final work in and faced a grade that would, or wouldn’t, match the effort that I placed into it.
I remember once hearing a professional speaker from a well-renowned company say that grades didn’t matter to her, as long as you have a degree to show for it. While I appreciated her theory, that was a risky train of thought, especially when one doesn’t know how hard (or easily) some individuals worked to get their grades. Someone who is naturally gifted may have had an easier path to earning their marks, as opposed to those individuals who struggled to get a B or C in school.
As a business leader, you have probably come across those individuals who are naturally gifted in their field and can catch on to a job role quite quickly, versus those who had to work hard to get where they are. Which one would you want to hire for your company? Would you hire a person who is naturally talented; one who wouldn’t let you down with their ability to catch on to a job and not be afraid of learning new things? On the other hand, would you want to hire someone who is determined and knows what it’s like to put in a lot of effort to get the job done? They may take longer to catch on, but you can be sure that hard work and great effort do not scare them away.
How does one choose which person is the right fit for their company? Here is a look into those two different kinds of individuals, and what their qualities could bring to your business and brand.
The Naturally Talented Individual
This is the individual who is extremely knowledgeable, without spending many hours studying books or their notes. It is like they have eidetic capabilities, where all it takes is to hear it once and it’s immediately ingrained in their memory. Many naturally gifted individuals don’t miss a beat. They aren’t deterred by new ventures, and the learning curve is fairly high as they are able to catch on, and stay on top of their duties without too much worry about their understanding capabilities.
If you choose to hire someone whose transcript is quite impressive with high grades, be sure to understand their work ethic. This is not to say that someone you hire who is naturally talented lacks the ability to work hard, they just may not have faced something that they deem challenging. While others may have studied for hours or spend countless days writing a paper, they may have used half the time and gotten the same or a better grade in comparison.
The Hard Worker
This person, while they may not have gotten straight A’s, worked hard to get where they are. This isn’t to say that they lack intellect, just like those who are gifted lack effort. These individuals have a better understanding of what it’s like to face a challenging situation, and to put in no less than 100% effort. If they fail to prepare, in essence, they are preparing to fail. They know this more than anymore, and have reaped the punishment for failing to work hard on an assignment or a test.
Do not sell someone short on their grades or on their learning curve capabilities. Coming from personal experience, seeing people have faith and patience in my work, proved that I was able to get the job done, even if it took a little longer to finish. Taking on a new task may be a little frightening at first, but do not sell them short in coming through on the job. Facing challenges and overcoming new obstacles is nothing new for a hard worker. However, one must have the patience and confidence in giving them a chance to prove that.
While this is just a general summation of characteristics, you may be able to see yourself leaning towards one type of individual versus another. You may recall a time where you had to work a little harder on a job or assignment, while others seem to naturally catch on. In comparison, you may think about how other individuals seemed to bring home books and study relentlessly, while with a quick skim of your notes you could easily ace a test or presentation.
Both individuals have the ability to be an asset for your company. As a business leader, you have to decide which one has the most to offer to your brand and the business market. Do not be afraid to take a chance on either individual, because all it takes is someone to give them the chance to prove that their capabilities are the right fit for the job and your company.