Detecting real talent

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Detecting real talent

With the intake of new trainees each year, it can be difficult to choose the best, who really has it and who doesn’t?  I used to have a point grading system, where I and the team applied scores to various attributes and characteristics. However, last Saturday, I was privileged to sit in on the auditions of sixteen young musicians, they were competing for a place in the final of a national competition.  The standard was so high, that in any other year, probably any one of them could have been chosen.  So, with only five going through, I thought the selection process was going to be very tough.

We watched the young musicians enter stage left, we listened to them play. We asked questions and concentrated intensely on their answers.  Our chairman advised us to go with our gut feelings: are they ‘in’ or are they ‘out’? Just one word next to their name, the five with the most ‘in’s’ go through, the rest carry on with their lives and do the best they can in the circumstances. Life can be tough.

The surprising result was that, despite the diversity of the jury and the anonymity of the voting, five very clear winners emerged. Five lucky ones who will receive something they are not given in the conservatoires and academies; a preparation for life as a solo musician.  International notoriety, bursaries to attend summer schools and festivals. Lessons in communication and contract negotiation; marketing support, financial management, concert tours, CD contracts and promotional videos. Everything they need to set them on their way.

And today, as I sit and write the ending to this blog I wonder what happens to those that never quite make it? I can only imagine that many escape from something that probably was never meant to be anyway.  As a good friend of mine once said “every disappointment is for some good”.  I didn’t appreciate it at the time, but I certainly do today.

Have a good week,


For those curious to know more, the competition was for the charity ‘Young Belgian Talent’.

2018-09-07T08:21:41+00:000 Comments

About the Author:

Harley is a dynamic 'we can do this' kind of person with a successful track record of working for a wide variety of companies in all kinds of sectors. From very small family run businesses right through to giant multi-nationals. Over the last thirty five years Harley has built a reputation for inspiring those around him to rout out and tackle the core problems facing their organizations. Armed with a wide range of pragmatic tools that he has developed over the years, Harley is able to help his clients bring about long-term, sustainable solutions, while having fun at the same time. Harley is a motivational 'people person' who is nonetheless tough on efficiency and delivery. Apart from being well known for his highly entertaining and motivational speeches, Harley is also a blogger and author of four books; 'The Change Manager's Handbook', 'Transition', 'Inspirational Leadership’ and ‘Making a Difference’.

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