The value of talent

A chapter from my book (in cooperation with Helle Hedegaard Hein) “Når talent forpligter” (Great talent requires great leadership):

In the Matthew Gospel (the first book of the New Testament) we find one of the first stories about ‘talent’ in the parable of the trusted talents:

An important Lord from a small village was to travel, and therefore he trusted his fortune, which in the days was the currency, talents, to his three servants.

The first servant got five talents and the other servant got two talents. Both invested the money and doubled the value. The first servant then had

ten talents, and the second servant now had four talents. The third servant received only one talent, which he dug into a hole in the ground.

When the Lord returned from his journey, he took account of the servants’ talents. The first two servants explained how they had doubled their amount and for that they received praise from their Lord.

But the third servant summoned his master’s anger over him as he had hid his one talent in a hole in the ground. The Lord called him a lazy and a bad servant because he had no interest in increasing the value of the talent. Then the Lord told last servant to hand his talent over to the first servant who had invested his talents and now had ten.

In the biblical narrative - talent is something valuable. Talent is something you should invest in. Talent commits. However, it is easier said than done. There can be many different strategies of motivation, management and talent development.

Some investments result in a positive outcome, others in a negative outcome, and again others lead to a loss of more or less everything. Therefore, it requires insight to work with talent.

Talent and talent development are in all contexts a complex size and therefore requires the right leadership and management to be handled and developed properly. And talent have no age, so as a leader or coach - we must continuously develop talent.