Mark Sanborn Answers Your Questions

Sometimes, I think I’m one of the luckiest guys on the planet. Well, actually … I know it. Why? I get to host the EntreLeadership Podcast. And here’s the coolest part: The job includes getting to meet and share the wisdom of some of the best business/leadership minds in the world.

Next Tuesday, I’ll be talking to another great guest—Mark Sanborn. Mark is president of Sanborn & Associates, an idea studio dedicated to developing leaders in business and in life.

He’s also the author of eight books, including the best-seller, The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary.

His latest is Up, Down or Sideways: How to Succeed When Times Are Good, Bad or In Between.

As I prepare for each podcast, I try to come up with questions that will help you the most. Now, I want to give you the same chance. What do YOU want to ask Mark?

Comment below with your top queries, and I will try and ask Mark, as well as mention your name. It’s your chance to be in the driver’s seat. How cool is that?



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Meet Chris LoCurto


Chris has a heart for changing lives by helping people discover the life and business they really want.

Decades of personal and leadership development experience, as well as running multi-million dollar businesses, has made him an expert in life and business coaching. personality types, and communication styles.

Growing up in a small logging town near Lake Tahoe, California, Chris learned a strong work ethic at home from his full-time working mom. He began his leadership and training career in the corporate world, starting but at E'TRADE.

56 thoughts on “Mark Sanborn Answers Your Questions”

  1. Hey Chris, I’ll say right off the entreleadership podcast is killer, keep it coming!
     Question for Mr Sanborn:  “What do you think about using a business coach?”  
    (By biz coach i’m referring to the type of coaching that would meet with you routinely, such as weekly…)  Thanks!

    1. @Kentlapp Great question Kent! I’ve always thought mentorship was important, idk that I’ve ever thought of applying the principle to your business specifically! I look forward to Mark’s response!!

      1.  @Skropp  @Kentlapp I have had 3 and all I can say is find a good one!  One that really cares and does not have too many of you.  Ask them to get involved and give them a piece of the prize, set a goal for the two of you and pay them a commission.  I often find they are full of FANTASTIC advise but I always needed someone to help me do.  Good LUCK!

    2.  @Kentlapp My follow-on question to this would be, “How do you know the coach you’re considering is a good one? How can you tell the one you’ve started using isn’t a chucklehead?”

        1.  @cabinart Just for you, I’ll try to find a way to use it in my own blog next week. You may have to read all week to find it, though….  😉

  2. Heres my question for Mark: “First off, you’ve got a great first name! My question is, I’m in the process of searching for job opportunities that will allow me to grow as a leader, what can I do to differentiate myself from other job seekers and develop my leadership abilities?”

      1.  @JoshuaWRivers  @Skropp Man that is tough, I am trying to do the same, but a person I admire and is successful said, start where you are at!  If you can’t go to your new thing with huge accomplishments then you are no different than everyone else.  You may work really really hard but, you have to show some huge proof and that is what I am struggling with.  

    1.  @Skropp This is really simple and maybe a bit too old fashioned, but always send a thank you note to the interviewer. He/she will remember you. Of course this may be too little too late, but if there is very little difference between you and someone else, your manners might put you over the top.

  3. On a side note Chris, I will remind you that the CLoBlog Tribe voted unanimously on the first ever CLoBlog Tribe live chat for you to say “BAH!!!” on the next podcast! We would hate to have to issue a reprimand for non-compliance!! 🙂

  4. Chis, 
    This is off topic, but is something, that I have been struggling with lately.  I now have been running my business debt free for a few months.  We switched from business credit to business debit cards almost 6 months ago.  
    My question is those points.  Has anyone come up with a solution to better capitalize with a business debit card?  Granted you will not get rich from them, but it is sure nice to have some “free” gift cards to use or give away as incentives.  

      1.  @Bret It is only for personal.  and there is a limit on the amount of money you can spend, to the number of transactions.  Neither work real good for me.  

  5. Questions: When starting a new venture, is there value in taking on a first, or even a first few clients as test cases for little or no money, simply to establish your product and reputation if your product is new and you need a positive result to point other potential customers to?
    In an industry where ownership of the company through incentive stock options seems to be the norm, is it crazy to not want to dilute ownership of the company but rather to give my future team ownership through actively listening to their ideas, making them participants in the process, and letting them share in the financial rewards of the company’s and their ideas’ successes?
    My company currently has one employee — me. And I’m working full time on a contract unrelated to our primary focus, so that I can fund the company. I’m building our software in the evenings and weekends and have begun a blog to start talking about some of the issues that software will address and am considering writing a book (e- or dead tree) to get some of these ideas out there as well. At some point, I’ll transition to part time on the contract, eventually leaving it to focus entirely on the new business line. What problems do you see with this approach?
    And if anyone here wants to comment as well, I’d love to hear from all you too! 

        1.  @KevinSchumm  @lilykreitinger I just didn’t want to deal with payroll taxation, but there were so many other benefits that it’s worth the small extra cost. And their customer service is amazing, and they’re very embracing of small startups including ones with only one or two employees. So far, I’m very happy.

    1.  @Bret Taking on clients for little or no money sounds brilliant to me – it is how I built my portfolio of murals so that I could bid on murals and actually get paid to paint.

  6. Question for Mark:  Many of us who listen to the podcast and read Chris LoCurto’s blog are leaders without a title, ( I’m looking forward to reading your book!). What are your recommendations so we can make a positive impact in our organization or business?

    1.  @lilykreitinger on that note, also where do you break the line from LEADING HELPING DOING to just firing someone you don’t think cares / gets it?  or  do you just “keep them on course”?

    2.  @lilykreitinger Around here you are the official Glossary Manager, along with the Best Storyteller and definitely an Original Thinker (or Thinker of Original Thoughts, you choose!)

    3.  @lilykreitinger Great question, Lily. It is so much harder to make an impact when you aren’t the leader in title – but sometimes I think we can make a bigger impact that way. Looking forward to the answer.

  7. I want to be a leader in business and in life. Currently I am an “office manager” at a business where I’m the only person in the office. I feel like I’m at a “disadvantage” for opportunity to show leadership. How can I exemplify leadership in big ways for my boss, when no additional employees are around?

    1.  @Laura Johnson Good question! My advice may not be worth two cents, but I would say that you could look for opportunities when talking to customers and vendors. Maybe you could find ways to make improvements or save money in the office. Taking the initiative in little ways may help.

  8. What is the best way to get people to buy in to the meetings, start vague, spouse, partner etc?  People that are not as motivated as you and need to process things longer.  Is the answer really just lead by example??  I often find myself talking about all the things I did or got going and then asking them how I need to help them get caught up, and more motivated, but it always seems to be hurtful and I don’t want it to be.

  9. How can I still make a positive impact on my team after having stepped down from a leadership position to a weekend staff position?

    Everyone on the team understands my decision –based on reducing stress, minimizing the frequency of the 120 mile (round trip) daily drive, and gaining a 20% weekend pay increase.

    I personally feel like I failed the team by transferring.

    Thanks Mark and Chris. As always I look forward to the upcoming podcast!

    1. @skottydog Remember, George Washington didn’t seek a third term, effectively “stepping down”. I don’t think he failed the country, nor did he cease being a leader!

    2.  @skottydog Don’t beat yourself up – you’ll have plenty of people to do that for you. (serious about the first part, maybe on the second)
      It sounds like the conditions you were in did not allow for you to be the best you could be in that position. Making the change may be the way for you to perform and produce better. Who ever fills/has filled your position may be able to pick up the torch and bring them to the next level. Not saying you weren’t capable, but such a long commute compounded by stress may limit effectiveness. You may have been doing fine as a leader, but it would eventually catch up to you. Wish you the best in your new role!

      1. @JoshuaWRivers That was exactly it. After finding out I had renal cell carcinoma, and subsequent surgery to be cancer free, I swore I would never stress about work when I got back.

        That lasted 2 weeks! I brought the department to a better place than when I found it, but felt it was time to move over and let someone else (a high “D” perhaps?) take the reigns.

    3.  @skottydog But you did the right thing for your family (fewer hours gone, less time on the road) and they have to take precedence over your team. Life is so full of hard choices. . . .sigh.

        1.  @skottydog  @cabinart Good for you for making your life fuller, reducing the stress and commute and making more time for what’s really important – your family!

  10. My question for Mr. Sanborn,
    I read the intro and the wee sample chapter on Amazon to “Up, Down, or Sideways: How to Succeed when times are Good, Bad or In Between.”
    My question is how did you walk out of your deepest ‘time is bad’ moment? And have you ever had to deal with a ‘time is bad’ moment that you caused yourself? How did you deal with that?
    Thank you for your consideration. 

    1.  @Aaron Nelson Good questions Aaron!  We’ve all had to deal with that time in our lives at one point or another.  It would be interesting to here the answer on this one…

  11. Great idea Chris!  I’m sure our “team” here will have lot’s of great questions.  Here’s one that I struggle with daily:
    What’s the best way you’ve seen for team members to influence a broken culture from a non-leadership position (besides the obvious; by being a good example)?  At what point do you give up on changing said culture and move on?
    Looking forward to the interview, as always!!!

  12. I love the idea of the “good shoulds” mentioned in the intro to “Up, Down, or Sideways.” My question for Mr. Sanborn is how do you separate and tell the difference between all the “shoulds,” to guarantee you are paying attention to the right ones?

  13. Been thinking off and on all day about the phrase “idea studio”. I’d sure like to know what that looks like! How many people are working together to come up with ideas? How are they tested? (don’t answer this on air – it sounds just too dumb!) Just saying, because “studio” to me means a place to make art. Can’t wait for the podcast!

    1.  @cabinart Studio is from the Latin “studere” which means “to study” and “zeal.” What I do with my team, clients and audiences is study (with zeal) leadership, find what works, bring creative insights and then share those insights through my writing, speaking and advising.

  14. Oh what a FUN post Chris! Love that you are involving your “team” by gathering questions – very cool! mark_sanborn 
    Some questions would include:
    1.As a leading thinker, author and speakers on leadership, how can someone go from being viewed in what society would consider a corporate non leadership type position to someone like yourself who is a confident leader and teacher? Were there times you ever struggled with this transition? If so, what were the hurdles you needed overcome either internally or externally and how did you overcome these? 
    2. In the rise to being a leadership expert in our areas, what value if any do you find in mentoring?
    3. What are your top 5 blogs, podcasts, and/or people you follow for excelling in personal growth?
    Live Beyond Awesome!

    1. TheJenMcDonough

      @Mark_Sanborn well jeerers creepers Mark, I am honored for the kind tweet! Looking forward to your interview with @ChrisLoCurto

  15. Ok – showing up LATE to this post!  So…..just wanted to say – love Mark Sanborn and his writings.  The Fred Factor was awesome.  I have not read his latest – but I will be downloading on my Kindle and checking it out!

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