I began my teaching life working with native Spanish speaking students learning English as a second language.
I had a wonderful experience in class one day when Jose came up to me to show me a paper folding project he had done at home. What he showed me not only brought sudden surprise to me, but instant wise-cracking from his classmates. They didn’t believe he made it himself.
What he made was a folded paper pickup truck that could be unfolded in a special way to transform into a full standing robot figure. It was ingenious. And I told him so.
To rebuild his crumbling credibility, I suggested he go over to a side table with a new piece of paper, and recreate something similar to prove to his friends that he did indeed make it himself.
I had confidence he could do it because at the start of the year, I noticed that his math ability in geometric concepts was at the 80th percentile, while his language scores were all below the 10th.
I began class and had the rest of the students active in the first lesson of the day. Within 30 minutes, Jose brought me a new creation similar to the one before. I immediately stopped what we were doing and showcased this paper-folding piece of art to the whole class. Like me, they were amazed, and Jose’s reputation took a flying leap.
Any of us who lead, have people near us like Jose. Being alert will make it possible to discover hidden talent that can be a game-changer for both your colleagues and the company you lead.
Look for the uncut diamonds that walk through your door.