This Post Contains Updates
One of the major changes of the internet era has been the flattening of the world. Talent is now global and increasingly so.
Technical talent with deep knowledge of computer science and engineering has always been geographically diverse, but the most creative tasks such as product design, artistic production and strategy tended to remain at a competitive advantage here in the US.
This is not necessarily the case any longer: some of the most creative endeavors are emerging from outside of the USA.
Over 80% of contributors on both GitHub and YouTube are based outside of the U.S.
I'd argue talent has always been fully distributed, employers are just late to the party. pic.twitter.com/yfkyqn2B60
— brianne kimmel (@briannekimmel) May 1, 2020
One obvious example of this is TikTok, one of the fastest growing consumer apps in the US is not even a US company!
Likewise, competition for entry into America’s elite colleges and graduate schools is more competitive than ever due to globalization
High test scores on the SAT, GMAT and LSAT necessary for acceptance are dominated by international students raised on a rich diet of math and engineering. As globalization continues, graduates from American universities must exploit their cultural competitive advantages to best differentiate themselves as they compete for the most highly coveted positions.
Fortunately, I’d argue graduates of American universities hold two key advantages over their international peers: 1) superior communications skills and 2) a tendency to be more extraverted. If developed correctly, these skills can be leveraged to attain significant competitive advantages for U.S. graduates in seeking employment and in career advancement.
Business and career success is often based on an inherent “like-ability factor”. While a perfect GMAT score may land two equally qualified graduates the same position with a top advertising firm, if one graduate is considerably more extraverted and has a stronger like-ability factor (relative to his peer), the more extraverted of the two stands to be the more successful.
Next, in terms of actual work assignments the more extraverted graduate can again differentiate himself from his peer, even if their deliverables are of equal caliber. For example, both new hires may devise equally impressive advertisement strategies, but the extraverted new hire distinguishes himself through his presentation of his report and by his interactions with the client. For example, during the spoken presentation the extraverted hire may present an aura of confidence that clients will appreciate; looking clients in the eye, remembering names and not shying away from a lively discussion will significantly increase the likelihood of the sales pitch.
Although these aforementioned soft skills are often assumed to be intangible, or traits a person is born with, communications and networking skills can be improved through practice and technique.
While American students are already at an advantage over their international peers due to a more social culture – international young professionals are quickly catching up as apps like TikTok actually help to develop cultures of extroversion and entrepreneurial or creative talent across the globe.