Mr. / Ms. Unknown? Could be your closet Superstar!

I believe, many like me would have been intrigued by people who possess hidden talents, strengths and qualities hither then unattributed to them in routine life. Someone who springs a surprise at unexpected moments. Mind you, these surprises once revealed do not remain unknown anymore but gets added to one’s overall persona.

I recall an incident during my initial employment days almost two decades ago when I led a small team to France. The excitement to be the face of the company was all palpable but it vanished soon the very 2nd day. We unexpectedly got stuck at a small place. Strangers all, and without any local assistance we (a group of 4) were on the verge of break down just like our borrowed car. Those were the days Garmin or mobile phones weren’t in vogue. With mind going numb as were other body parts in the unfamiliar chilly weather conditions we frantically looked for assistance in the desolate surrounding.

Sometime later we saw a pickup van approach our way as if it was manna from heaven. With trepidation we waved to halt it. Halt it did but unfortunately the elderly gentleman behind the wheel wouldn’t understand a word of our heavily accented Indian English. Just about to give up one amongst us — a newly recruited service engineer colleague — became our savior of the day. With fluent, impeccable French he not only explained our situation but charmed the noble van owner to drop us to our hotel. Not discounting his technical prowess, such was the impact of him that he (the Sales Engineer) subsequently became our lead technical expert for almost all Francophone countries our company exported to.

In various walks of life we have seen many-a-times unknown face grabbing center-stage by their sheer unrevealed talent. Unseeded player winning a Grand Slam or a rookie dark horse literally breasting the tape ahead of book favorites does happen in real competitive world.

Usually in our professional team centric environment, individual facets often stay submerged as uniformity is covertly encouraged. Yet at times personal traits by design or default come to the fore. That’s the occasion to celebrate and cherish. Arguably not all such heroes yearn to hog the limelight; in fact many prefer anonymity or downplay their stellar contributions towards success of a team project. It becomes incumbent upon the leader to recognize hidden talents around oneself and help evolve them by making available conducive environment.

Scarce availability of talent is an oft heard grouse. Much of it could be eradicated if one has an eye to spot them or a knack to unearth them.

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