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Difference Between Talent and Skill

Talent vs Skill

“Talent” and “skill” are often used interchangeably in conversations and perceptions. Both words pertain to the ability or potential of an individual to deal, work, and perform a particular task. However, their main difference is their point of origin.

A talent is defined by resources as the ability by a person that is inherent, inborn, or naturally occurring. A talent is said to be a special ability to do something without prior experience, study, or tutelage. It is often classified or compared to an instinct or a certain flair for doing something without extra effort and almost perfect in execution.

Since a talent is innate, only some people have actually acquired it. A talent makes it somewhat restricting–some people have it and others do not. Because it occurs naturally, a talent is also seen as raw ability which can be developed and improved over time with direction like instruction and training. Consistent improvement of any ability or craft gives an advantage for any individual.

This is also true for a skill. Unlike a talent, a skill is an ability that is learned and practiced for a period of time. A skill is an acquired or obtained ability which is often the result of constant performance and improvement on a particular task or behavior.

Skills are often taught and considered as a demonstrated talent. It is the “nurture” aspect which is the opposite of a talent being the “nature” or natural acquisition of ability. In this viewpoint, it can be said that a skill can be a result or an extension of a person’s particular talent and considerable effort. This means that a talent can be a stepping stone to improve a skill. A skill can be a refined ability when combined with talent.

Using both a skill and a talent can drive an individual to success and fulfill a goal in life. It is not a substitute for talent, nor is a talent a substitute for skill. A skill, as something acquired, needs instruction, time, training, and practice to actually learn. The training involved in doing a skill can also result in good values like hard work, perseverance, dedication, excellence, and other positive attributes to a person.

Another difference between a skill from a talent is that everybody has a chance, potential, and capacity to learn and earn a particular skill.


1.A talent is an innate ability to do something. It also involves potential for further development and improvement. A skill, on the other hand, is a learned ability and a result of study, effort, training even before development or improvement.
2.Talents and skills are not substitutes for each other though they are used interchangeably. In many cases, a talent can be developed into a skill, as a refined form or as a demonstrated talent. This instance makes a talent as a platform to acquire or develop a skill easier.
3.In terms of acquisition, a talent is the natural aspect that needs little or no knowledge or effort while a skill is the nurturing aspect where there is a lot of time and effort spent to learn and execute a certain ability.
4.A talent occurs only in a limited number of people, and not everybody has access to it. Meanwhile, skills can be learned by anyone who has the capacity, potential, and willingness to learn.
5.A great advantage for learning a skill is that there are some additional values that can be learned in the midst of the learning process. Positive attributes regarding work and training can also help develop a person. Though talents can also offer the similar values in the duration of improvement, skills often require a more profound and much deeper embodiment and application of these values and attributes.
6.Both abilities are instrumental in the performance and accomplishment of a task or a dream.

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  1. Talent is your God given gift while skill is something you learnt how to do by yourselve.

  2. Talent makes life easier and more rewarding, especially if you put in the same amount of effort as someone without talent.

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