“There will always be someone as smart or smarter than you and you have no control over that. The only thing you have control over is whether you have more drive, more passion than others.”

As chief technology officer at Trading Technologies, Drew Shields has been instrumental in the implementation of the software vendor’s new top-to-bottom makeover. The new architecture required lots of technical talent, to be sure, but it also required two additional attributes – hunger, and the ability to challenge the status quo.

In college Shields majored in theology, and he started in the business world with few discernible technical skills. But he had the drive and passion to succeed, and he was given a chance to prove himself. He says that, while some job opportunities at TT require specific expertise, in many cases the company places a higher priority on a candidate’s motivation and attitude.

That’s not just next-generation product development; that’s next-generation talent development.

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