The Potential Principle

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Mark Sanborn on Scaling Up Business Podcast with Bill Gallagher What’s your potential? We all know we want to reach our potential yet nobody really knows what it is. Today’s show is with best selling author, Mark Sanborn, on the topic of the potential principle; how do we realize and keep hitting new levels of potential forever. Mark introduces a framework to always be grappling and expanding your potential over time, yours and your company’s.

Mark Sanborn is the president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea lab for leadership development and turning ordinary into extraordinary. He is also the author of The Fred Factor and his most recent book, The Potential Principle, which is what we’ll be talking about on today’s episode!

Mark wrote The Potential Principle after working 30+ years with leaders. He realized that his clients were already really good at what they do. However, it dawned on him that in order for them to continue being the best, they had to continue to improve. How could they do that if they were already the top leaders in their industry? They have no one else to emulate. They’re on the frontlines and they’re making things up as they go.

The more you learn about any particular skill or industry, the more you realize you have to learn. There’s nothing wrong with arriving at your destination in your industry but the real problem is when you stop growing and stop challenging yourself to reach a new level of potential.

What is the Potential Principle? In a nutshell; we all know how good we’ve become, but none of us know how good we can be. The potential principle highlights this problem to help you realize and plan where your ‘next’ step is. As Mark was researching the book, he found that 58% of professionals said they had a commitment to getting better, but only 30% had a plan. Commitment without a plan is just wishful thinking and daydreaming.


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Scaling Up is the best-selling book, by Verne Harnish and the team at Gazelles, on how the fastest growing companies succeed where so many others fail.My name is Bill Gallagher, host of the Scaling Up Business podcast and a leading business coach with a Gazelles. We help leadership teams to get the 4 Decisions around People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash right so that they can Scale Up successfully and beat the odds of business growth success. Our 4 Decisions are all part of the Rockefeller Habits 2.0 (from the original best-selling business book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits).

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