Kim Scott

Performance is a key factor — it’s important to distinguish excellent performance from low performance. That’s fine. But often when we think about so called ‘talent planning’ — we use the word ‘potential.’ ‘Potential’ is exactly the wrong word. The problem with “potential” is that when you mark someone as low-potential, you devalue your rock stars off the bat. Instead, use the word growth trajectory. There’s nothing good or bad about a steep growth trajectory or a gradual growth trajectory. It just references different phases in our career. When you look at your team this way, you identify five different modes that people can be in. They can be in superstar mode. They can be in rock star mode. Or on various paths to reaching or recessing from those modes.

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