Trump: Is Business Success a Natural Talent?

Trump, Think Like a Champion, 57-9

A lot of people think I’m a natural at business.  In some ways they might be right, but it’s also an acquired skill that takes discipline and focus, just as being an athlete or a musician takes perseverance and years of training…

There’s a certain amount of bravado in what I do these days, and part of that bravado is to make it look easy.  That’s why I’ve often referred to business as being art…

I received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in January of 2007, which was a big surprise for someone who opted for Wharton and real estate as a career.  Did I have a natural talent for the entertainment industry?  Maybe, but I’ve also always paid attention to it.  I understand how it operates, and I’m always learning.  When I was in school, I always did more than was expected and studied on my own in addition to what was required.  I’ve noticed that a lot of very successful people have done the same thing, no matter what their respective fields might be…

The natural ability I may have as a businessman is being able to see the big picture while I’m taking care of a lot of details.  I can focus on a few things at once at this point and find them working themselves out.  That comes with experience, but I remember making a deliberate attempt to assimilate as much as possible at all times, even back in school.

There are prodigies, it seems, but under close scrutiny all prodigies were carefully trained.  I think talent has to do with aptitude for what you are doing.  Some people are simply doing the wrong thing, and when they find the right thing, they become successful.  Working hard and working intelligently should go together.

Heredity and environment are two factors that I consider seriously, from personal experience.  My father was a great example: He was in the construction and real estate industry, and I saw firsthand what it took to succeed.  I had no delusions of it being an easy or glamorous path.  I chose to make it more glamorous because my tastes went toward that aesthetic.  I consider myself very fortunate to have had this education from my father from an early age.  I believe it gave me a great advantage…

But did it give me a natural talent?  I don’t think so.  It gave me an advantage that I deliberately chose to develop into an advantage.  You can be around something and either have no interest or aptitude for it, so it wouldn’t be of any help to you.  My elder brother had no interest in real estate and decided to do something else.

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