There are two categories of great individual contributors: the ones with great technical skills and also maturity, and the others without maturity.
The first rule is that you should never bring people without a great technical background or adequate for their level, so let’s focus on people with that – right side of the chart.
The best people I worked in my life were very mature. I learned a lot from them. They know how to solve complex problems, but also how to stay focused, motivated and positive, communicate well, and empower people and teams.
A lot of great people I met without enough maturity became mature over the time after different experiences. Self-knowledge and openness are crucial for that. They also became the first group.
But a couple of them stayed the same and took ages to take a small step. They will never become rock stars.
Depending on your bar, you won’t want them too.
Also published on Medium.