I recently saw the movie, The Gambler. In an early scene, Mark Wahlberg's character (Jim Bennett) shares his perspective regarding talent and desire with his university class saying, "Desiring a thing cannot make you have it."
He argued that desire alone is not enough. A person must have real talent.
I wanted to hit rewind. He was so spot on.
Talent is not important. Talent is critical.
The best-of-the-best in any profession have one thing in common and that is real talent. The best-of-the-best have real talent to do what they do at a very high performance level on a consistent basis.
Talent is essential. It is so essential I would argue there are only a select few who have enough desire to succeed without real talent.
To be "Don Draper Class" or to be a "sales wolf", you must have desire AND talent. You have to be "all in" emotionally and have the talent to do what it takes to consistently win.
I realize my mindset goes against the popular "You can be anything you want as long as you put your mind to it," but I am right. A lot of the positive psychology mumbo jumbo has done a disservice to the workforce, especially those in sales. Used appropriately, positive thinking or the Law of Attraction can help fuel desire but in the end - talent is critical.
Those who consistently win have desire AND talent. Desire alone cannot carry anyone to consistent accomplishment without the power of talent.
You either have talent or you do not.
If you do not have the talent to do a particular job exceptionally well, then the only thing that you have is desire. Desire without talent is fleeting. Desire without talent leads to "porpoising" - sometimes performance is strong and at other times performance is weak. Sometimes desire can succeed without true talent but often will be unable to do so.
No one was put on this earth to be average. Settling for average performance is settling. Settling is only for losers.
If right now you are thinking, "Come on Chris... Someone has to be average," Then you are settling for mediocrity - particularly if you are talking about the talent on your bus. You are destined to lose with this mindset.
Talent plus intense desire is EVERYTHING.
To win consistently - to outperform the competition consistently- you must have desire PLUS talent. You must have both - in significant quantities. Every single team member on your "bus" must have desire plus talent. Your company must be filled with freaks who are the best at what they do whether it is engineering, sales, Customer service, management, and everything in between.
Talent comes from a combination of past experiences, training, education, and personality.
Desire comes from what motivates you.
Both can be measured and they must be objectively discovered in your hiring and selection process.
The company with the most talent and desire will win the most.
Only hire the best salespeople with real sales talent and real desire.
Can you honestly tell yourself that you are hiring the very best salespeople with very real desire to succeed - to perform - to win?
Or are you still settling because it seems easier?
2015 is around the corner. Carefully review how you are identifying, hiring, and onboarding sales talent. Does your hiring process still involve hiring from the gut? Hiring from the gut is for losers. Hiring from the gut sets you up to lose when competing against a competitor committed to hiring real talent and real desire.
Hire the best salespeople possible with real talent and desire. The only way to do so is to use a sales personality and aptitude test that can actually measure sales talent and desire.