We interviewed David Mead on The Today's Mama Podcast. We talked about finding your "Why", how to help your kids do the same, and the power of human connection. LISTEN HERE!
A Reframe on Fulfilling Potential
- David Mead
Over the years that I’ve been engaged in our work to inspire others, I’ve noticed a pattern: when it really comes down to it, most people find fulfillment in life when they are helping others. Whether it’s random acts of kindness, being there for a friend when they need a shoulder to cry on, or contributing to work that matters, we feel good when we make people’s lives better.
We often describe this desire to better the lives of others with the word “potential.” More specifically, helping others reach their full potential. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that.
While the sentiment may be authentic, I’ve always struggled with the concept and how overused it is. I think we often say it without thinking about what “reaching our full potential” really means. Think about it ... can we actually ever reach our full potential? Can we actually help others reach their full potential? And if we can, then what? Do we stop learning, stop growing, stop asking questions, stop dreaming?
Of course on the surface, reaching our full potential is a worthy goal. But “full” implies that there is a limit. Once a bucket is full, we can’t add more water to it. Once our voice mailbox is full, that’s it. It stops fulfilling its intended function. In other words, it has reached its full potential.
I would offer a slightly different perspective on the concept of “fulfilling potential.” Rather than using a limiting word like “full,” what if we thought about it as something more enduring. It’s much more inspiring to help someone achieve their untapped potential or awaken people to their developing potential.
When potential is unlimited, when it is infinite, it can become our life’s work. It can inspire us to be a little better than we were the day before, and help others do the same. And that’s something we can do for the rest of our lives.
Read more on fulfilling potential in Simon Sinek’s Editor’s Letter on Virgin.com.
About David Mead
I'm an introvert, an observer, a thinker and a feeler. I love sharing simple ideas that propel people forward. I'm a lucky husband and dad of 2. I love geeky technology stuff and I spend way too much at lulu lemon.
David is committed to a world in which the vast majority of people wake up inspired to go to work, feel safe while they're there and go home at the end of the day fulfilled by the work they do.
Today, he's here to share a few simple ideas that are helping to make that world a reality. In 2004, he started a career in corporate training. A few years later, while earning an MBA with a focus in Organizational Development, he realized something. What he, and so many other people, were being taught in business school was contributing to the poor leadership he had been enduring for much of his career.
In 2009, shortly after beginning his MBA studies, he met, and was inspired by Simon Sinek and his concept of the Golden Circle and was invited to join Simon's team. He started by developing content to help Simon share his powerful ideas and in 2012 he began speaking and facilitating workshops to help shift people's perceptions about leadership and culture.
David has now taken his years of practice and co-authored with Simon, Find Your Why, a step-by-step, practical guide on how to discover the Why for any individual, team or organization.
David is globally recognized as the “How” guy to Simon’s “Why.” David has presented these simple, inspiring ideas on 5 continents to over 200 organizations in a wide range of industries such as athletics, technology, retail, healthcare, finance, government and hospitality.
Regardless of the organization's size, industry or country, David finds that these ideas resonate with those who want to find meaning in what they do and are committed to creating a culture where people come before profit.