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harvest the potential

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Nina579, Feb 1, 2017.

  1. Nina579 Member

    Polish - Poland

    Can I say:

    We can learn a lot from each other if we only harvest the potential of our employees.

    Is this expression natural?


  2. The Newt

    The Newt Senior Member

    USA / EEUU
    English - US
    It's okay. I'm not sure what "only" is doing in that context.
  3. Nina579 Member

    Polish - Poland
    I guess it was meant to put emphasis on how it's such a simple but unexplored thing to do. Do you suggest I get rid of it?
  4. The Newt

    The Newt Senior Member

    USA / EEUU
    English - US
    The problem is that it isn't clear whether it means "simply" or "exclusively" (that is, harvesting the potential of our employees alone, not those of other people outside the company). You could probably just omit the word.
  5. Nina579 Member

    Polish - Poland
    Sure thing, thanks for your input :)
  6. Edinburgher Senior Member

    German/English bilingual
    I think that the "simply" meaning is likely to be that intended. The sense is: Harvesting their potential is all we need to do to learn a lot from each other.
    If so, then "if only we" would have been better than "if we only".
  7. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    English (American)
    I think what you mean is "harness the potential." "Harvest" sounds bizarre.
  8. The Newt

    The Newt Senior Member

    USA / EEUU
    English - US
    Good point. "Harvest" might make sense but "harness the potential" is the expected idiom.
  9. Myridon

    Myridon Senior Member

    English - US
    When you harvest something, you remove it from its source. After harvesting apples, the trees no longer have apples on them. After harvesting the employees' potential, ... :eek:
  10. Nina579 Member

    Polish - Poland
    Thank you all, it's a good think that I haven't sent that yet! It's supposed to go out tomorrow haha.

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