Should You Be Skilled In One Area, Or In Many?

August 3rd, 2012 10:28am CDT by Tamara Schaad

Wow, what a head-spin with the Olympics. Trying to keep up with all of the information has been mind-boggling, to say the least. Part of my struggle has been learning the scoring system for each different event. Since the only sport I played as a kid was soccer, and the only sport I’ve ever watched is football, there has been a large learning curve with some of these activities. For instance, trying to figure out the archery scoring system as the Women’s Individual was happening took me a bit. Nonetheless, it’s been very interesting. One thing I’ve been researching, throughout this, is the decathlon, the event that determines the “World’s Greatest Athlete.”

World’s Greatest Athlete vs. World Record Athlete?
I wonder if athletes training debate whether to go for a World Record and gold medal in one area, or be the World’s Greatest Athlete and get a gold medal for a group of areas? I mean, on the one hand you probably end up as the greatest at one or a small handful of events. On the other, you are able to complete a wide variety of events with amazing ability. So which is best?

The reason I make this distinction, by the way, is that in my research it appears that decathlon bests never beat the world records. What this means is that decathlon participants would never win at a world record against others. Yet, a world record-holder would never win in a decathlon (unless they trained for it, but that doesn’t seem to be the case).

In the business world, I myself have found that being well-rounded in skills has been the most beneficial, while I’ve seen others benefit from being heavily talented in one area. Is there a right or a wrong here?

My thought has always been that neither is “right or wrong,” nor even a bad idea. Instead, each different skill set has its pros and cons. Being highly skilled in one or two capacities means you reach a level of excellence like no one else. You are the go-to person for that one or two talents. However, being skilled in a multitude of areas means you are adaptable. You are the flexible person, filling in gaps that may come up along the way. They work together, in a business-setting, and even in other situations. Like the Olympics.

What do you think? Do you think it’s best to be talented in one area, be a jack-of-all-trades, or both?

Anyhow, just some ponderings for today. Go Team USA! Keep it going!





1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...

Comments are closed.