Chapter 1IntroductionThe Power of Reframing

Intelligence, talent, and experience are all vital qualities for leadership, but they’re not enough. They don’t make the difference between success and failure. It’s commonplace for businesses, once successful, to go into a funk. Then they need a turnaround because the smart, experienced people in charge who know the place better than anyone else have failed. The usual solution is to bring in an outsider with a stellar track record, but that approach doesn’t always work. It all depends on how a leader thinks.

Take the case of an American institution, JCPenney, where generations of Americans had shopped for almost everything for more than a century. More than a few remember it as “the place your mom ...

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