Talent and Intelligence

Planos de bónus de ratos e homens,,en,Nossos planos mais bem-sucedidos costumam dar errado,,en,Nós vemos isso o tempo todo em um nível pessoal,,en,acidentes,,en,bons e maus,,en,mortes,,en,tanto de entes queridos e tios ricos,,en,nascimentos,,en,e loterias todos conspiram para reformular nossas prioridades e tornar nossos planos nulos e sem efeito,,en,não há nada como uma infelicidade sólida para nos levar a colocar as coisas em perspectiva,,en,Esta oportunidade pode ser o proverbial forro de prata que somos constantemente aconselhados a ver,,en,O que é verdade em um nível pessoal também é verdade em uma escala maior,,en,O colapso financeiro de toda a indústria deu uma claridade filosófica à nossa profissão,,en,uma clareza de que poderíamos estar muito ocupados para notar,,en,mas para os terríveis problemas em que estamos agora,,en,Essa clareza filosófica inspira análises,,en,e colunas,,en

In the last post, I argued that how hard we work has nothing much to do with how much reward we should reap. Afinal, there are taxi drivers who work longer and harder, and even more unfortunate souls in the slums of India and other poor countries.

Mas, I am threading on real thin ice when I compare, however obliquely, senior executives to cabbies and slum dogs. Eles são (the executives, que é) clearly a lot more talented, which brings me to the famous talent argument for bonuses. What is this talent thing? Is it intelligence and articulation? I once met a taxi driver in Bangalore who was fluent in more than a dozen languages as disparate as English and Arabic. I discovered his hidden talent by accident when he cracked up at something my father said to me — a private joke in our vernacular, which I have seldom found a non-native speaker attempt. I couldn’t help thinking then — given another place and another time, this cabbie would have been a professor in linguistics or something. Talent may be a necessary condition for success (and bonus), but it certainly is not a sufficient one. Even among slum dogs, we might find ample talent, if the Oscar-winning movie is anything to go by. Although, the protagonist in the movie does make his million dollar bonus, but it was only fiction.

In real life, no entanto, lucky accidents of circumstances play a more critical role than talent in putting us on the right side of the income divide. Para mim, it seems silly to claim a right to the rewards based on any perception of talent or intelligence. Heck, intelligence itself, however we define it, is nothing but a happy genetic accident.