Tag Archives: Talent Is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else

Practice Outweighs Talent in Developing Expert Performance

Daniel Coyle

Daniel Coyle

Journalist Daniel Coyle consolidated neuroscience research with stories of expert performers in The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How .
He distilled three principles that enable performance development across a variety of skills and fields: The Talent Code

“Deep” Practice, which includes daily repetition for up to several hours, observation, and corrective feedback by an expert to develop the myelin of “muscle memory” and increase neural signal strength, speed and accuracy.
This practice must be characterized by focused attention to mimic expert performance, reduce errors, and willingness to practice at increasingly more challenging levels.

Ignition, or commitment based on “unconscious desires” and “triggered by primal cues”

Master Coaching, in which to expert teacher encourages “ignition” and “deep” practice with:

1. Task-specific knowledge explained with vivid examples and meaningful metaphors
2. Perceptive tailoring to each student’s skills and needs
3. “The GPS Reflex”, or providing timely, specific guidance
4. “Theatrical Honesty,” or ability to empathically connect with students

K Anders Ericcson

K Anders Ericsson

Related Posts review foundational research by K. Anders Ericsson, who suggested that expert performance requires “10000 hours of practice.”

Geoff Colvin

Geoff Colvin

Talent is Overrated

Talent is Overrated

Like Coyle, Geoff Colvin argues that Talent is Overrated and can be eclipsed by systematic practice with corrective coaching.

Paul Herr’s Primal Management: Unraveling the Secrets of Human Nature to Drive High Performance also argues that motivation in the workplace, as in Coyle’s broader discussion of performance and motivation, is based on the “evolutionary psychology” of “tribal survival” and includes:

Paul Herr

Paul Herr

  • Self-Protection, the foundation of Maslow’s hierarch of higher-order needs

    Abraham Maslow

    Abraham Maslow

  • Cooperation, collaborative work in groups fulfills people’s social desires to belong to a group working toward a shared goal
  • Skill deployment, opportunity to develop skills and experience satisfaction with progressive improvement
  • Competency, opportunity to demonstrate skills and receive social recognition for these improvements
  • Innovation, based on people’s curiosity and desire to make in processes, systems, ideas, Primal Managementevents

-*How do you develop your talents?

-*Where do you find expert coaching?

-*How do you persist in “Deep Practice” even when it’s “no fun”?

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