We've all known people who've had a ton of talent but just couldn't seem to find a way to be successful. I always find that to be such a heartbreaking thing. We often think of it with young people. Maybe it's your son or daughter who shows such promise in sports, music or academics yet they just don't have the work ethic yet to capitalize on their potential.
Just because we're adults doesn't mean we're exempt from missing the opportunity to be all we were created to be. That's a real issue for all of us. I think it's tough for we middle-aged business people. These days we're all doing more with less, working harder to balance the challenges of work and our families. We're all trying to determine when we should lay our professional goals down, because life is good enough. Well, I hope this is a little shot in the arm. If we're still breathing, there's still time to make our dreams come true.
One of New York Times best-selling author John Maxwell's books is titled, Talent is Never Enough and here are some tips that can help us all reach our potential.
- Passion energizes your talent. If you still don't love what you do, do something else.
- Initiative activates your talent. I can't tell you how many times I've watched professionals just sit back and expect their dreams to fall into their laps without any effort on their part. It doesn't work that way my friends.
- Focus directs your talent. We are all bombarded daily with a myriad of things clawing for our attention. Will you have the determination to cut through the clutter and focus on the things that make the biggest impact?
- Preparation positions your talent. Maybe college was a long time ago. What are you doing to continue to grow yourself and your business.
- Perseverance sustains your talent. Life is tough, get over it and push on toward your goal. Quitters never make it across the finish line. Do you want to allow your challenges to make you bitter or better. I recommend better.
- Courage tests your talent. Do you have the courage to stand up and do what's right, even when everyone else says, "oh come on, no one will ever know."
- Teachability expands your talent. How many know-it-all executives do you know? We need to work very hard to be life-long learners.
- Character protects your talents. My friends, in my opinion, we seem to have a character crisis in our businesses. Many people say there is so many grey issues in business. I'm of the belief that the world is more black and white...right and wrong than many of us are willing to admit. I say life is grey for those who lack vision, values and the character to stand up for them.
- Responsibility strengthens your talent. How many times have you seen a business leader create cover for their choices? Or here's another way to think about it. Sometimes leaders abdicate responsibility because it allows them to stay in power. The fact is that type of leadership doesn't strengthen talent.
- Teamwork multiplies your talent. I believe one is too small a number to achieve greatness. We've all heard the saying, together everyone achieves more. Well, I've lived it and can assure you if you have any doubts, it's true.
So, why do I share these? Well, they're principles I live by and ones that have helped me go to the next level. Many of you may have seen the news that after 14 years, I'm leaving PBS39. Trust me this was the toughest decision of my life. I love this station and this community more than I can express. However, I've had a dream to lead a television station for over a decade and I've been tenaciously developing the necessary skills to be able to do it. I couldn't sit back and live my comfortable life and let my dream drift away. I felt compelled, pushed and pulled to chase it. I'm extremely grateful to have been selected as the new general manager of PBS Charlotte WTVI so this will be my last blog written from Pennsylvania. After I get settled in North Carolina, I'll start them up again. You'll be able to find them at my Facebook fan page. I'm sure I'll continue to learn many leadership lessons there and I look forward to sharing them with you. Hey, if you're ever in Charlotte, please look me up!
Amy is an Emmy Award winning producer who's passionate about developing people. She is a John Maxwell certified leadership trainer, speaker and coach. Like me on Facebook at Amy Burkett Sucess Seekers, 610.814.0610 Amyburkett@johnmaxwellgroup.com.