But aren’t weddings the perfect opportunities for people to let hidden talents shine through – intended or otherwise?! And sometimes I wonder how it is we don’t know these things about people who are often our nearest and dearest.
I’m a prime example. As MC for the wedding it was up to me to shepherd the hundred or so guests from ceremony through photos and dinner; introduce the wedding party, speakers, propose toasts and formalities for the evening. On top of this was organisation and coordination of everything from caterers, to band, photo booth, photographer, key songs for specific moments and knowing all the guests and seating plans etc. Now to start with my parents couldn’t believe that I have no qualms standing up and speaking in front of large groups of people; they were genuinely (and thankfully pleasantly) surprised by the content and delivery of my speaking; so too the level of detail put into the organisation and coordination on the night. Now I’ve run literally hundreds of events in my career ranging in numbers from small groups through literally 1000+ people and in all manner of settings and situations. I’ve run many different training and coaching courses and have spoken at numerous events. All things I’m sure my parents are aware of, but it was surprising to them to be confronted with it in person, perhaps most of all as I literally had to force my Dad to the mic for the Father of the Groom speech!
My partner does a massive amount of client hosting in his line of work and as such he’s a pro at working a room, learning everyone’s name, details about them and their families and can recall them at a moment’s notice. A trait he displayed at the wedding prompting amazement from friends and family who known him years and regularly comment on how often he’s not in attendance at functions due to hosting clients – again something they maybe had to see in action to really understand?
And we are not the only two in this boat. The best man delivered an exceptional speech displaying love and affection for my brother and his now wife, albeit with a bit of ribbing in-between in the form of a very clever poem he wrote. So too he sketched the images that were used as postcard invitations to the wedding – again traits a select few knew he possessed.
I discovered a good friends girlfriend who performs a very specific role in digital trafficking that I’ve been trying to fill for some time at work; a cousin who is a qualified Reiki therapist and a number of other tidbits and talents about people previously unknown to me – especially when I compared notes with the other half later to hear about his discoveries!
But all this got me to thinking; a lot of people perform ‘roles’ in their families – daughter, sister, decision maker, peace maker, bank roller the list goes on. And they’re sometimes pegged into these roles meaning the rest of the person isn’t seen within the confines of the family unit. I believe this is happening regularly in the workplace also. People are hired into specific roles to perform specific tasks. But what other skillsets do they possess? What would the result be if we focused more on ability and less on role specifics. What if employees were given the opportunity to showcase the skills and abilities they have in areas other than those required for their role? What if they were given the chance to work across projects or assist in other areas of the business that interested them outside of their main job function? I daresay we’d be surprised by some of the things the people we’ve pegged as this or that can do in other areas. I’d even go so far as to say we’d see increased productivity across the wider business if we allowed for more cross business collaboration and time in/on other areas of the business that individuals are interested in, in addition to our everyday roles.
I’m off now to recreate a wedding environment at work so I can discover the hidden talents within our organisation yet to be tapped into.