I have come to understand that to succeed in life, you need more than talent.
Growing up, I had somewhat of a delay in my education. To get admitted into the University, you needed to pass the entry examination popularly called JAMB. On each occasion that I sat for the exam and scored above the cut-off mark of the schools of my choice, I was denied admission because I didn't get the score 'needed' to make the list. My parents didn't see the need to put in any extra effort because they felt based on merit, I should have made the list. But that never happened until I took my destiny in my hands and charted another course for my life.
I was brought up to believe that if you were good enough, what you deserved will always come to you based on how good you were. No reason to lobby for what you deserved.
Fast forward to when I started working as an adult. I was diligent with whatever was given to me. I always went the extra mile to get results. For me, it was about the success of my team and I gave my all. Yet when it was time to be rewarded with promotion, allowances, recognition etc, I was overlooked on several occasions. Then I began to notice a pattern everywhere else I worked. I discovered that those that got the accolades didn't rest on their abilities alone, something else was involved!
As I veered into self-employment, this same thing was operational here too. To close a business deal, to get referrals, to execute a job, you needed this thing if you are going to succeed in business.
What exactly is it?
It is your Human Relations skills.
As an employee, in addition to your awesome abilities, you must know how to be a team player, when to stoop to conquer, how to be in the good books of the decision makers, how to show empathy and how to show solidarity when necessary etc.
As a business person, you must know how to identify decision makers and get their attention, you must know how to network and how to have a great support system etc.
These are some of the hidden rules of life success.
For example, the Law of Karma is a law of success. What you give, you receive. The relationship you build, you gain from when it is time. Who you invest in, will become resourceful for you in time etc. These are very evident in our everyday work life.
This post is especially for parents. It is good to help your child discover his/her talent but don't stop there. Teach your child the importance of having more than a talent.
They need to stop shouting "I get talent", "I get talent" and start developing the right attitude. Because truly, today's parents don't even offer their daughters hands in marriage due to a man's talent or potential.
The right attitude that requires them to learn how to study every environment they find themselves and understand how the system works. The attitude that makes them understand the need to integrate into a system without losing integrity. The attitude to work with people and not be isolated due to a perceived class or status.
Our kids need to learn these to be successful in life and business because truly talent is never enough.