Growing talent is like growing a plant

Whenever we talk about Talent Management and growing talents in organizations, I always recall this story.


There was this man who was determined to grow plants that give beautiful flowers in his garden. He went to the market and inquired about the best seeds available. Upon recommendation by others and his own physical examination, he chose to buy a particular variety. He and his family were so excited to sow the seeds. They watered the soil, dug the ground, planted the seeds, and watered again. His son was so excited about the plant that he protected the area with a grill.




Next day, everyone got busy except the father and the son. They inspected the place and noticed that the soil was still wet. They decided to water the area again in the evening. This routine continued for a couple of days. Next day morning when they went to inspect the area, the scene was same – some traces of water on the soil and nothing more. The man got a doubt why the seed was not sprouting out. He restrained himself for another day.


But the next day, when he saw the same status, he could not resist. He and his son dug up the soil to check what the seed was doing. There was a trace of pale green colored plant spouting out from the seed. It was so tender that it could not face the direct sun shine. The father and son felt comfortable that something was happening and therefore placed the soil again and watered. But due to the intrusion into the growth process, it got affected and slowed the growth. After a few days, the man got really restless and dug up the soil again. He had now seen a small plant about to break the ground and come onto the surface. However, unwittingly, while digging it out, the man hit the root of the plant and it seriously damaged. Left alone, it could have grown in a few days. But due to the restlessness of the man, it got killed. A promised seed could not grow into a plant due to the impatience of the man!


Now, if you draw parallels to this story with the talent growing and grooming process in organizations, doesn’t sound very similar? The impatience of the leaders does not allow promising talent to emerge into established competence. They hurry the process of growth which may fundamentally affect the growth of the individual! Due to the suffocation and early exposure to complex situations, the professionals with good potential will turn into failures. In our anxiety to get the best out of our potential talent, we may fundamentally kill their talent.


Had the man showed some patience, the seed would have grown into a plant and then into a tree for lasing benefits!


Blog Author: Dr Raj

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