I have built my own information research company on being a generalist. In college, my dad said I could take any courses I wanted. I see the value of a liberal art education. I was an art director for years. My work was designing for different people in different fields of interest. I capitalize my design on my generalist knowledge. Knowledge in different fields allows me to steer my clients into searching out new ideas and solutions to their products and projects.
I have been a fan of Benjamin Franklin for years. I was in printing and knew he had such varied interest in so many different fields. I was fascinated in his timeline for selling off a profitable printing business to focus on his own endeavors. I left printing at the age of 49, a year later than Franklin.
I am particularly interested in his time in France where he donned the simple look of a backwoods colonialist instead of trying to out do the French and their keen eye for fashion. Franklin was able to adapt and read the situation around him. France was enthralled with Franklin for many reasons. His witticisms, his work on electricity and of course his diplomacy.
I am by no means a polymath but, I am striving for that title. Thank you for the great article. I have posted your story on my LinkedIn feed.
Rox of Spazhouse, Intuitive Research