Volume 14, Number 14
January 2, 2007

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The Runaway Sheep

yigit turhan"The most exciting place to discover talent is in yourself."
Ashleigh Brilliant

Not in a million years would I have imagined that what I perceived to be a cold metallic, serious door into the world of banking would open up to reveal a festival of colors, creativity and vast selection of career tracks. For me, it was just a boring old door that led to nowhere but numbers, numbers and more numbers, be it for personal use or career opportunity. But coolhunting has found its way into the employment arena. According to the results of focus groups and advice by consulting firms, Garanti Bank -probably the most innovative in Turkey- decided to create a "Talent Camp" where students would benefit from seminars and real-life success stories, and be able to network with their peers and try and have their ideas of working in the financial industry challenged.

The "Talent Camp" was made up of forty participants. Campers were selected from a list of hundreds from all over Turkey, pared down according to a balance of EQ and IQ. It wasn't enough to have academic excellence. Students had to have something that was different...a creative edge, a standout personality, a strong spirit.

Those lucky enough to be chosen experienced high quality seminars, entertainment, and a chance to work on challenging case-studies in groups of eight. In the end, we presented our ideas to executives, and have been taken into consideration for the MT employment process. According to the stats, immediately following last years camp, 7 out of 27 did internships, while seven started working at Garanti!

The main theme of the "Talent Camp" was: "create a difference in order to be successful." I started to apply this concept to each and every project I've tackled ever since. It was just one of many bits of inspiration that were included in the price of admission. Tolga Egemen's, "It's not important how long you've been a pilot, but how much you've been on the air." quote was equally impressive. Feel free to apply this into your lives. You do not have to hesitate just because you lack experience! You may have enthusiasm and knowledge others don't. Another quote I liked was "Voice your opinion!" by Nafiz Karadere. It is a simple, yet powerful message. If somebody asks for your opinion, give it. if they don't like it, they'll do it their way regardless. I don't think I will ever forget the people who have left me feeling so inspired: our coach Tuba Guckan enthusiastically supported us through the nights; Ergül helped me with my presentation on the way to Garanti; Burcu and Nurdan Hanım did my interview; Ömür impressively discussed the product development department, and all the other coaches made sure everything was just fine, and did so with a smile on their faces.

With all honestly, the Garanti Talent Camp experience wasn't something I can sum up in a short article. This was a chance to take in more than enough information about functional group work, impressive presentations, creative thinking, standing out from the crowd, and exploring different career paths. The diversity was interesting indeed, with my work group being made up of American football players, artists, finance addicts and writers. I now know that Garanti values creativity over anything else. After all it's only through innovation that one can take a step further into the future. The industrial revolution is over: we're facing a new era with a creativity explosion of young minds. If all of this sounds as interesting to you as it was for me to be part of, there'll be another camp next term! Apply soon.

Take the chance; go and create a difference.

Yiğit Turhan (EE/IV)

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