Talent Is Overrated What Really Separates World-Class Performers from EverybodyElse

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2008-10-16
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover
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One of the most popular Fortune articles in many years was a cover story called "What It Takes to Be Great." Geoff Colvin offered new evidence that top performers in any field--from Tiger Woods and Winston Churchill to Warren Buffett and Jack Welch--are not determined by their inborn talents. Greatness doesn't come from DNA but from practice and perseverance honed over decades. And not just plain old hard work, like your grandmother might have advocated, but a very specific kind of work. The key is how you practice, how you analyze the results of your progress and learn from your mistakes, that enables you to achieve greatness. Now Colvin has expanded his article with much more scientific background and real-world examples. He shows that the skills of business - negotiating deals, evaluating financial statements, and all the rest - obey the principles that lead to greatness, so that anyone can get better at them with the right kind of effort. Even the hardest decisions and interactions can be systematically improved. This new mind-set, combined with Colvin's practical advice, will change the way you think about your job and career - and will inspire you to achieve more in all you do.

Author Biography

Geoff Colvin, Fortune-'s senior editor at large, is one of America-'s most respected business journalists. He lectures widely and is the regular lead moderator for the Fortune Global Business Forum. A frequent guest on CNBC-'s Squawk Box and other TV programs, Colvin appears daily on the CBS Radio Network, reaching seven million listeners each week. He also co-anchored Wall Street Week with Fortune on PBS for three years.

Table of Contents

The Mystery: Great performance is more valuable than ever-but where does it really come from?p. 1
Talent Is Overrated: Confronting the unexpected facts about innate abilitiesp. 17
How Smart Do You Have to Be?: The true role of intelligence and memory in high achievementp. 36
A Better Idea: An explanation of great performance that makes sensep. 52
What Deliberate Practice Is and Isn't: For starters, it isn't what most of us do when we're "practicing."p. 65
How Deliberate Practice Works: The specific ways it changes us, and how that makes all the differencep. 84
Applying the Principles in Our Lives: The opportunities are many-if we think about our work in a new wayp. 105
Applying the Principles in Our Organizations: Few do it well, and most don't do it at all; the sooner you start, the betterp. 126
Performing Great at Innovation: How the principles we've learned take us past the myths of creativityp. 145
Great Performance in Youth and Age: The extraordinary benefits of starting early and continuing on and onp. 167
Where Does the Passion Come From?: Understanding the deepest question about great performancep. 187
Acknowledgmentsp. 207
Sourcesp. 209
Indexp. 221
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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