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Big potential

Kirjoittanut: Ville Parkkila - tiimistä Hurma.

Esseen tyyppi: Yksilöessee / 2 esseepistettä.

Big Potential: How Transforming the Pursuit of Success Raises Our Achievement, Happiness, and Well-Being
Shawn Achor
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 3 minuuttia.

Author Shawn Anchor has written a book called Big Potential. I decided to research the book because I was praised by my friends for it. Big Potential is based on researched information, some of which has been studied by the author himself.


The potential of the book is divided into two parts. Lower potential is about what an individual can achieve and high potential is about what an individual can achieve when they belong to a group. So the essence of the book is that great potential can only be achieved with other people.

Based on the essence of this book, I will open the five themes discussed in the book.



Anchor says in his book that it makes sense to surround himself with positive influences. That’s how he describes it:

”The key to creating a super bounce for your potential is to surround yourself with people who will lift you up rather than drag you down.” (Anchor, 2018, 63)

Anchor writes in his book a lot about the starry sky and thinking, where anyone who wants to be a star needs other stars around him to shine. There is a lot of talk about this idea in various books and it confirms that the information is really true.


The book covers teamwork research at Harward University. From the results of this study, it was noted that having two different types of team would result in significantly more creative and better solutions to different problems.

Anchor writes about three different types of people that people need in their lives.

Pilars are those who are a rock for you in tough times.

Bridges are connectors to new people or resources outside of your existing ecosystem.

Extenders are positive influencers who push you out of your comfort zone.

(Anchor 2018, 79)


EXPAND Expand your Power: Leading from every seat


One of the most important leadership skills is being able to share some of the leadership with other people. Often, the goal of leadership is to make it unnecessary. The book unlocks four strategies to help with this journey.

1) Lead from the eleventh chair

2) Develop your elevated pitch


3)  Use progress as fuel


4) Lead from every lunch seat



The importance of encouragement cannot be overstated. Anchor talks about creating recognition and how it is a renewable resource. Renewal means that when you give credit to others, you get it back even greater.


It is important that the process by which it is achieved is recognized, not just the end result. For example, marketing deserves credit for a good sales result, not just a salesperson who carries out a transaction with a customer who reaches out to them.


Anchor emphasizes the importance of pursuing a culture where every member of the organization recognizes each other. In most cases, leaders focus on providing feedback themselves, while it would be more productive to focus on creating culture to support feedback.



Anchor emphasizes the importance of creating your own method of dealing with the negative issues facing your business.

The book describes five strategies in this regard:

  • build a moat
  • build a mental stronghold
  • Learn the art of Mental Aikido
  • Take a vacation from your problems
  • Pick you battles

Everyone should find their own style to respond to negative influences and thus be able to overcome them in everyday life



Anchor attachs the great importance to the idea that the more we channel our energy in a positive direction, the more energy we can draw from others.

Anchor describes again three strategies to this topic.

1) Generate more positive energy by creating Tours of Meaning

Meaning is that “unbalanced force” that keeps us going, especially during busy or stressful times. (Anchor 2018, 187)


2) Utilize vivid direction

Only once we recognize this can we begin to move from a vicious cycle where our mental images feed our fear to a picture of the world that gives us power. (Anchor 2018, 197)

3) Celebrate the wins

Anchor calls for celebration of success, because the positive energy it gives will help you to succeed again soon.



Achor S. 2018. Big Potential: How transforming the pursuit of success raises our achievement, happiness, and well-being. Currency: New York.