Talent or Temperament which is the most essential quality for a successful employee?

  • Talent is a set of personal characteristics that enhance one’s ability to achieve expertise in an accelerated manner.
  • Temperament is the way you tend to behave or the types of emotions you tend to exhibit.

Does having the only talent or only good temperament make an employee a star performer?

The simple answer is No.

Talent supplemented with the right temperament is required to make an employee efficacious.

Let’s dig into a small story of a CEO and his very talented but temperamental employee.

Robert was the CEO of a small and successful ‘School and Office Supplies’ company. He grew his company from scratch with the help of his very talented employee John.

Several innovative ideas of John had helped Robert scale his company to the current prosperous level. Everyone in the organization recognized John’s value to the company and he was heading the ‘Innovation & Design’ department of their organization.

To accommodate the growing business needs, Robert along with his newly found business partner had agreed upon a reorganization plan. To John, this reorganization plan would mean that he would be losing his identity as the head of the ‘Innovation & Design’ department.

This hit John’s temperament badly and his behavior at work worsened within no time. He fell way behind schedule in his new designs on the ‘school and office supplements’ and became uncooperative with other departments and co-workers.

Robert was upset by John’s attitude towards work but could not afford to lose him as he was one of the pillars of the organization and his contributions to the organization growth were undeniable.

Now here we have a star performer who was an excellent talent but was unable to keep his temperament under check, which is not acceptable behavior in a business environment.

Change is inevitable in any organization and employees should be open to accepting the change.

All organizations have employee assistance program to help the workforce handle stress and changes.

The HR team plays a pivotal role in recruiting candidates with the right skill and temperament to work.

There are popular personality instruments with powerful questions on personality used globally by the recruitment teams. These questions help identify the ‘Personality type’ of the employee, their leadership style, workplace preferences and areas of strength to highlight and also the areas of potential blind spots.

The corporate temperament report is the most widely used report by organizations to help both the recruiters and the employees increase their effectiveness in the workplace.

The HR Teams could probably add and give more importance to using personality identification approach to their recruitment strategy as part of their new year resolution.

I would conclude by saying, Employees with both talent and temperament turn out to be all-time greats.

What do you think? How do you hire people with excellent technical skills and a great temperament?