DR. HALL’S LEGACY
Dr. William E. Hall
One of Talent Plus’ founders, Dr. William E. Hall, earned a doctoral degree at Ohio State University, one of only two schools at the time where psychology departments studied talented people, studying under Dr. Carl Rogers. In addition to Rogers, two other significant psychologists of the day, Sidney L. Presser and Abraham Maslow, were keenly interested in the work Dr. Hall was pursuing in the study of human potentiality and recruited him to teach at each of their universities. Instead, he accepted a position at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, where he would eventually become the head of the Department of Educational Psychology.
While teaching at the university, he established the Nebraska Human Resources Research Foundation (NHRRF) (now known as the Nebraska Human Resources Institute (NHRI)) with Dr. Donald Clifton, one of his graduate students. It was while working with NHRRF that Dr. Hall first met Doug Rath, a college student counselor in the program. Dr. Hall ran various trials with college students to determine the best way to differentiate between highly talented and less talented student leaders. The structured interview process allowed for the open expression of thoughts, feelings and behaviors, which Dr. Hall grouped into “themes of personality” and found to be the most reliable and accurate in differentiating student leaders who excelled and those who did not. Dr. Hall left academia in 1968 to use his structured interview process to identify top performers in the business world.