“Run in such a way as to get the prize.” 1 Corinthians 9:24
At the beginning of his long running best seller, Good To Great, Jim Collins proclaims “good” is the enemy of “great”. What I think he means by that is that good – defined as “good enough” – can settle us into complacency, thus holding us back from reaching our full potential.
I once envisioned success as being a destination, that is attaining a certain level of achievement in some lucrative field such as law, medicine, or finance, so that I could kick into maintenance mode and reap the rewards, similar to winning the lottery then living on easy street. But the closer I came to attaining that kind of success the more I began to realize that easy street is a dead end street, the very thing that threatened me from ever reaching my highest potential, a perfect example of good being the enemy of great.
It was my own battle with the enemy “good” that eventually led me to the profession of coaching, first to be coached myself, then to coach others. It opened my eyes to the great potential that exists among bright, well educated high achievers in today’s market place who in my opinion represent one of the world’s greatest under-developed resources. The potential lies in transforming proven successful people and their endeavors from good to great rather than settling into maintenance mode as I had been tempted to do.
Coaching is not about teaching or offering advice. Instead it is about exploring possibilities together with a fellow human being. The thrill occurs when new potential is discovered and begins to develop.
Like easy street “good enough” is a dead end street. It is the enemy that becomes a barrier between us and our fullest potential. “Run in such a way as to get the prize,” the Apostle Paul encourages us. The prize is not a destination or a finish line; rather it is that thrill that occurs when new potential is discovered and begins to develop. It is about staying in the race, seeking and pursuing opportunities, growing and learning.