Some say they cannot find qualified, trained people for positions and projects of great importance. And others claim that Everybody is gifted, if only we could all make that discovery.
No doubt, circumstances play a role, too. In the right environment, certain people do impress with their abilities, and in the next ecosystem (sometimes just next door) their performance becomes poor.
One can only imagine what this means for our educational systems, even the pre-school ones, or especially those. As Artificial Intelligence takes over more and more space (from us?) one has to wonder what the ideal model for training, education, cultivation, and eventually transcendental performance, will be in the future.
Should it foster champions who can deliver, regardless of conditions? Or should it create conditions in which Everybody can thrive? Because let’s be honest: for now, we just attempt to manage conditions where everyone can feel not too bad, and not be considered redundant…
It seems that the time to get rid of two misconceptions, has come:
First, the notion that ‘the absolute best’, the ‘ideal’, is a utopia and we should be ‘realistic’ instead, is not serving us very well. This is (unfortunately) the prevailing mentality since it has infiltrated such diverse sectors as pedagogy and psychology, higher education and politics, human rights and legal regulators. And this affects Performance, everywhere.
Second, the idea that democracy and justice should translate into everyone suffering pretty much the same: Burdens, responsibilities, duties, are distributed now more fairly than ever in history. In other words, Misery, but not too much, and almost for everyone. How about happiness? Or the specific kind of success one dreams of? Or fulfillment beyond what our accountants calculate, and contribution beyond what our taxes require?
At this point, technology and innovation are decades ahead of what governments and the educational systems can grasp, let alone implement. Unless everyone gets pretty much on the same track, the divisive part of our nature will keep growing… Misunderstandings in the diplomatic, corporate, and academic world will become the norm and preoccupy the public agenda (in the form of oversimplified debates) leading to useless memorandums, paralyzing strikes, or riots that leave the world speechless, although predicted a decade ago.
We should be careful when we speak, then. When we teach, especially. Even when a little piece of advice is given, the mentor in question has to ponder on all 3 factors: Is it improving performance? Can it develop into a complete strategy? Will it bring results? This self-scrutiny should not lead to inertia out of fear of mistakes. It should serve as a constant control- check with an aggressive task: to make everyone better and happier, as soon as.
Several noted professionals around the world, aware of the scale of the challenge, work tirelessly to improve the odds. But we need more.