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Leapfrogging: Harness the Power of Surprise for Business Breakthroughs
Soren Kaplan


9781609944940
Retail Price: $27.95
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Format: Hardcover, 240pp.
ISBN: 9781609944940
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
Pub. Date: August 6, 2012

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Description and Reviews
From The Publisher:

Today’s business climate demands breakthroughs, not incremental improvements. What makes one leader or company thrive while others languish in today’s fast-paced, ever-changing marketplace? There’s no doubt hard work is involved, but Soren Kaplan shows you can’t do it by simply creating a big vision and implementing a set plan. In his trailblazing debut, Kaplan gives business leaders the tools to do exactly what they’re taught to avoid: embrace surprise—the new key to business breakthroughs.

Instead of fighting against uncertainty, Kaplan reveals how to use it to break down limiting mindsets and barriers to change the game. By highlighting specific ways to transform both good and bad surprises into unique opportunities, Kaplan encourages leaders to compete by embracing counterintuitive ideas, managing paradoxes, and even welcoming failure. This is the key to “leapfrogging”—creating or doing something radically new or different that produces a significant leap forward.

Leapfrogging connects new research, unconventional strategies, and practical tools for navigating the “messy” and elusive process of achieving business breakthroughs. Filled with real-world examples from innovators such as Gatorade, Intuit, Philips, Kimberly-Clark, Colgate-Palmolive, OpenTable, and Etsy, Kaplan shows that any organization or business function can leapfrog. Using his LEAPS process (Listen, Explore, Act, Persist, and Seize), leaders learn to seek out, recognize, and respond to surprising experiences and events as a way to create solutions that leap beyond the current expectations of customers, partners, employees, the market, and the competition.

Kaplan’s writing style makes his compelling findings fun to read, simple to understand, and easy to implement. Leapfrogging is the new handbook for the modern leader.



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Reviews

Leapfrogging challenges its readers to break out of conventional thinking by employing a few simple notions: know who you are, stay true to your purpose, and enjoy the journey along the way. By showcasing examples of challenging conventional thinking, embracing surprise, and welcoming failure as a learning exercise, Kaplan invites readers to learn from the stories of others. Leapfrogging shows that leaders who look inward to challenge the status quo will be on track to truly change the game.”
—Sarah Robb O’Hagan, President, Gatorade


“Breakthroughs in business don’t follow set formulas. We must continually explore options, test, and modify our assumptions based on results and feedback. Then, we can adapt to what we experience and learn. Leapfrogging delivers new principles and tools that readers can apply to their business, whether they’re just starting out or leading an established organization. It is the new guide for entrepreneurs and leaders in today’s environment.”
—Glenn Allen, cofounder, OpenTable


“We as business leaders are always talking about, but rarely find, the key to lasting breakthroughs in the organizations we lead. We push and persist and still get incremental results. Leapfrogging is an extremely useful and insightful handbook for managers on how to finally break the cycle of incremental innovation.”
—Dr. Ric Roi, Senior Vice President, Global Center of Excellence; Head, Consulting Practice Leader, Asia Pacific Right Management/Manpower Group


“Superbly crafted, powerful in its simplicity, offering smart, actionable learning… Finally, a simple, holistic model that allows for breakthrough thinking and living.”
—Mary Beth Robles, Vice President, Innovation Capabilities and Knowledge Systems, Colgate-Palmolive


“Creating breakthroughs requires new approaches to how we engage in learning as leaders ourselves and as organizations. Leapfrogging reveals strategies for engaging people in the type of experiential learning that challenges assumptions and leads to breakthroughs.”
—Anne Blouin, CAE, Chief Learning Officer, ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership


 
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About the Author

Soren Kaplan has worked within large corporations, founded and advises start-ups, consults to global companies, and educates students and executives about the art and discipline of strategic thinking, innovation, and leadership for business breakthroughs. His unique ability to uncover surprises that are "hidden in plain sight" helps leaders shift their mindsets to rethink and reinvent their organizations.

As a Managing Principal of InnovationPoint, Soren leads strategic initiatives and provides leadership development for organizations including Cisco, Colgate-Palmolive, Disney, Medtronic, Philips, Visa, and numerous other firms. He is an Adjunct Professor within the Imagineering Academy at NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences in The Netherlands. He has a Ph.D. degree in Organizational Psychology and resides in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, two daughters, and hypo-allergenic cat.



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Table of Contents

 
Foreword by Marshall Goldsmith
Introduction
 
1Business Breakthroughs Deliver Surprise
2The Power of Surprise
3Leapfrogging to Breakthroughs
4Listen: Start With Yourself, Not the Market
5Explore: Go Outside to Stretch the Inside
6Act: Take Small Simple Steps, Again, and Again and Again
7Persist: Take the Surprise Out of Failure
8Seize: Make the Journey Part of the (Surprising) Destination
9Bring It Home
 
Notes
Acknowledgement
Index
About the Author



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