The Upside of Turbulence

The Upside of Turbulence Cover

The Upside of Turbulence

Seizing Opportunity in an Uncertain World

By Donald Sull

HarperBusiness, Hardcover, 9780061771156, 276pp.

Publication Date: October 6, 2009


Traditionally, leadership has been equated with vision. We look to leaders in business and government to have the genius to know the future and lead the rest of us to where that vision becomes a reality. We look for goals to beckon us and rely on strategic plans to guide us, all the while knowing how unreliable and unpredictable the future might be. Emerging realities (the financial crisis of 2008, the rise and fall of oil prices, the creative destruction of the Internet, for instance) often distort and destroy established maps. How do we plan when plans become irrelevant?

Through his celebrated career as a professor of business and a medicine man to companies big and small, Donald Sull has studied how best to reconcile this paradox. The essence of leadership, in the deep logic that underpins this book, relies on a leader's flexible tenacity to plot a course that can withstand and even be propelled by the complexity and dynamism that the modern business terrain contains.

Based on a decade of research, historical case studies, and intensive work with established enterprises and start-ups, this book lays out the fundamental logic of opportunity and provides a series of practical steps to translate insight into action.

Praise For The Upside of Turbulence

“It is a “must read” for all those that wish to understand the dynamics of managing through turbulence in order to capture the opportunities and limit the threats.”
-Mohamed El-Erian, author of When Markets Collide

“Like the agile organizations he describes in The Upside of Turbulence, Donald Sull leaps deftly among ideas and examples... Will help senior executives act and succeed in a world where the future is always foggy, plans are inherently unreliable, and opportunities and threats come seemingly out of nowhere.”
-Tom Stewart, author of Intellectual Capital