Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful!!!

“Talent is God given. Be humble. 

Fame is man-given. Be grateful.

 Conceit is self-given. Be careful.”

 – John Wooden

How do you discover talent?

How do you discover talent? And How do you cultivate it or nurture it.

The book, The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle, provides several examples of how ordinary people are delivering extraordinary achievement and the formula or code at work.

How does a penniless Russian tennis club, with just one indoor practice court create more top-20 women tennis players than the entire United States of America?

How does a 13-year old girl do a month’s worth of practice in just six minutes?

How did Brazil become such a World Power in Soccer ?

Five world cup victories. And a cast of stars: Pele, Zico, Socrates, Romario, Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Kaka….all past winners of FIFA World Best Player Award.

You see Brazil wasn’t always a great producer of soccer players. At least not in the 1940s and 1950s. Brazil never won the world cup before then.

They failed to defeat then world soccer power Hungary in four attempts.

It wasn’t until 1958 that Brazil emerged. In the form of a brilliant team featuring a 17-year old Pele at the World Cup in Sweden.

In fact, soccer historians traced the magic moment to the opening three minutes of Brazil’s 1958 World Cup semi-final victory against the heavily favoured Soviet Union.

The dreaded Soviet team was overrun by the ball-handling skills of Pele, Garrincha, and Vava.

As commentator Luis Mendes said, “The scientific systems of the Soviet Union died a death right there. They put the first man in space, but they couldn’t mark Garrincha.”

That was when football became an art. Brazil had mastered the art of football. They found a way to increase their “learning velocity”

So how do you discover talent?

The book quotes a German proverb that says, “You will become clever through your mistakes.’

The book says that when you make a mistake, and you go through a process of self-correction, that effort makes it stick in your brain. So that next time you encounter that problem, your brain is able to deal with it….effortlessly.

It is a technique call Deep Practice.

When you practice deeply, you use time more efficiently, and your small efforts produce big, lasting results.

That is the basis of effective learning, and talent.

Eze Ohajunwa