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Many business professionals aren’t aware of their own talent

Leanne Hoagland-Smith. | Provided photo~Sun-Times Media

Leanne Hoagland-Smith. | Provided photo~Sun-Times Media

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In today’s marketplace, finding good talent and keeping that talent could be viewed as a Herculean task. What employee engagement research tells us that talent management is becoming an ever increasing priority with small business firms, those with 99 employees or less.

Many professionals, including small business owners to C Suite executives, truly do not know their own personal talents. These talents are infused into their overall decision-making and thinking processes.

One of the better, if not the best talent management assessment tools, is the “Attribute Index” published by Innermetrix. This psychometric tool measures several factors that contribute to what the Greek philosopher Socrates said, “Know thyself.”

The reason this tool outperforms so many others is its construction is based upon mathematics. Dr. Hartman of Yale and MIT founded the science of Axiology (the science of decision-making). He based his research on assigning mathematical values to feelings. Where other assessments tools are subjective and inductive in nature, the Attribute Index is objective and deductive. This difference creates a far more accurate assessment respective to validity and reliability.

What Dr. Hartman discovered is human beings use three filters or dimensions of thought when making decisions. These filters are:

• Head – Systems thinking

• Heart – Intrinsic thinking

• Hands – Extrinsic thinking

In simpler terms when it comes to making decisions human beings are thinkers, feelers or doers.

Hartman also recognized we use different filters when making external decisions (about the outside world) and internal decisions (about ourselves). Additionally, decisions are affected by our biases either positive or negative.

Just imagine for a moment if you could have 78 talents identified, ranked along with an explanation as to what the score meant for you personally. Do you think you could leverage your higher talents better to achieve results with greater consistency and quality?

Another aspect of knowing one’s decision-making style and one’s talents is because most people focus on what they do not do well as conditioning from early school experiences kicks in. Remember the red pen?

Yet why do winning teams win? Is their ability to win based upon the talents of the team or the weaknesses? Do sporting recruiters or agents seek out the future quarterback with the weakest arm; the defensive lineman who cannot tackle; or the running back who is continually tripping?

So many of us, myself included, have traveled life’s path truly not knowing what we do well and not understanding the why behind our decision-making process. Of course this “why” may change because our decisions are based upon our emotional experiences as well as the roles we embrace. How we make decisions when under pressure or recent traumatic stress will be different than when our lives are calmer or when we are in different roles.

All of us have talents. The goal is to know those talents and then be able to further leverage and develop those talents based upon our current goals and roles. Once we have that knowledge and apply it to our every day lives, amazing results are really possible.

P.S. Shout Out: Miner-Dunn is a long time favorite, family-owned local traditional hamburger and chicken restaurant in Highland. In Valparaiso, the Costas family has opened another restaurant, Burgerhaus, featuring gourmet hamburgers.



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