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1. There is no such thing as great talent without great will-power.

Honore De Balzac (1799-1850) French writer. La Muse du Departement (1843)


2. A formal and orderly conception of the whole is rarely present, perhaps even rarely possible, except to a few men of exceptional genius.

Chester Barnard (1886-1961) U.S. business executive and management theorist. The Functions of the Executive (1938)


3. Too many companies believe people are interchangeable. Truly gifted people never are. They have unique talents. Such people cannot be forced into roles they are not suited for, nor should they be.

Warren Bennis (b.1925) U.S. educator and writer. Organizing Genius: The Secrets of Creative Collaboration (co-written with Patricia Ward Biederman; 1998)


4. An idea can turn to dust or magic, depending on the talent that rubs against it.

William Bernbach (1911-82) U.S. advertising executive. New York Times (October 6, 1982)


5. All our talents increase in the using, and every faculty, both good and bad strengthens by exercise.

Anne Bronte (1820-49) British novelist and poet. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848)


6. Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.

Stephen King (b.1947) U.S. writer. Quoted in Independent on Sunday (London) (March 10, 1996)


7. The world is filled with unsuccessful men of talent.

Ray Kroc (1902-84) U.S. founder of McDonald’s. Quoted in The Fifties (David Halbertstan; 1993)


8. Timing and arrogance are decisive factors in the successful use of talent.

Marya Mannes (1904-90) U.S. essayist and journalist. Out of My Time (1971)


9. This is the age of time and talent.

Jonas Ridderstrale, Swedish academic and author. Funky Business (co-written with Kjell Nordstrom; 2000)


10. The system is producing a horde of managers with demonstrable talents…The tragedy is…these talented performers run for cover when grubby operating decisions must be made and often fail miserably when they are charged with earning a profit, getting things done, and moving the organization forward.

Ed Wrapp, U.S. academic. Dunn’s Review (September 1980)