Just Start: Take Action, Embrace Uncertainty, Create the Future

Overview


How to succeed at work and life—in an increasingly unpredictable world

In a world where you can no longer plan or predict your way to success, how can you achieve your most important goals? It’s a daunting question. But in today’s environment, where change is the only constant, it’s a question everyone must answer. This is true whether you are an innovator or an entrepreneur, a manager or a newly minted ...

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Just Start: Take Action, Embrace Uncertainty, Create the Future

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Overview


How to succeed at work and life—in an increasingly unpredictable world

In a world where you can no longer plan or predict your way to success, how can you achieve your most important goals? It’s a daunting question. But in today’s environment, where change is the only constant, it’s a question everyone must answer. This is true whether you are an innovator or an entrepreneur, a manager or a newly minted graduate.

The first step, say the authors of this book, is this: “Just start.” In other words, take action now and learn as you go.

Written by a trio of seasoned business leaders, Just Start combines fascinating research with proven practices to deliver a reliable method for helping you advance toward your goals—despite the uncertainty that is all too common today. Babson College President Leonard Schlesinger, organizational learning expert Charles Kiefer, and veteran journalist Paul B. Brown share their own deep and varied experiences and draw from a source where striving amid constant uncertainty actually works: the world of serial entrepreneurship. In this world, people don’t just think differently—they act differently, as well.

Using this novel approach, Just Start will help you:

• Determine the best strategy and tactics when the future is uncertain
• Minimize financial risk in every decision you make
• Attract like-minded people to what you want to do (and learn why this is important)
• Understand why “Act. Learn. Build (so you can) Act again” is the best course of action when facing the unknown

So throw out your forecasting tools and shrug off that nagging frustration that comes with constant uncertainty. Just Start distills for you the very essence of what makes people successful in today’s volatile environment. This book is your guide to achieving your goals—whether your project is professional or personal, or somewhere in between.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“For readers stuck in neutral gear, this book, written by seasoned experts, creates the impetus to move forward.” — Library Journal

“This is a must-read to increase the level of innovation in your organization. You’ll leave this book being able to take immediate action to learn how to innovate in a way that is right for you.” – Wayne L. Delker, Senior Vice President – Chief Innovation Officer, Clorox

“Schlesinger, Kiefer, and Brown’s Just Start is a distilled, step-by-step, proven method for how to create something new in uncertain environments.” – Tom Watson, Dean, Omnicom University, and Cofounder and Vice Chairman Emeritus, Omnicom Group Inc.

“This book is one huge step in the right direction for anyone compelled to forge a dynamic future in uncertain times.” – Bill Hybels, Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church, and President of Board, Willow Creek Association

Just Start is a uniquely practical book that helps prepare the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders and will equip them with the key frameworks for success.” – Marina Kim, Executive Director, Ashoka U

“In Just Start, the authors take what the research tells us about those who have succeeded the most in volatile environments—serial entrepreneurs—and applies their lessons to the rest of us. They provide a practical, step-by-step method to navigate through complex and uncertain environments, bounce back from setbacks, and overcome obstacles. A must-read for anyone struggling with uncertainty.” – Steve Mariotti, Founder, Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship

Library Journal
Schlesinger (president, Babson Coll.) and organizational learning consultant Charles F. Kiefer (president, Innovation Associates), with journalist Paul B. Brown (coauthor, Your Attention Please: How To Appeal to Today's Distracted, Disinterested, Disengaged, Disenchanted, and Busy Consumer), aim to show readers a new way to plan for business or personal success in an unpredictable world. Bringing together academic research with proven practices, the authors teach a process they call "creAction," which emphasizes acting and creating rather than overthinking and analyzing. The gist is that one begins with a strong desire to achieve a particular thing, then takes a small step toward that goal as soon as possible. This action is followed by an evaluation of the results, and then another small step in pursuit of the goal. While the authors primarily encourage readers to start doing something, they also provide criteria for understanding current situations and assessing acceptable losses. A particularly useful chapter covers how to get others to commit to a cause or business plan and provides exercises to help do just that. VERDICT For readers stuck in neutral gear, this book, written by seasoned experts, creates the impetus to move forward.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781422143612
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 3/20/2012
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 420,081
  • Product dimensions: 6.46 (w) x 9.92 (h) x 0.78 (d)

Meet the Author


Leonard A. Schlesinger is the twelfth president of Babson College, widely recognized as the world’s leading educational institution for entrepreneurship. He formerly served as vice chairman and chief operating officer of Limited Brands. Charles F. Kiefer is president of Innovation Associates and a regular advisor to global companies on leveraging the human side of their enterprises. Paul B. Brown is a long-time contributor to the New York Times and a former writer and editor for BusinessWeek, Financial World, Forbes, and Inc.
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 22, 2012

    This book rocks!

    Fabulous business book for those who are self employed or thinking about it. The concept have made a huge difference for me in my work.

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