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Fifth Ingredient: Putting the Wind at Your Back

Growth is the only evidence of life.

—Cardinal John Henry Newman

When considering Jim Citrin’s not-so-crazy idea to become the CEO of Best Buy, I listened to half a dozen of the company’s past earnings calls and meetings with investors. They all shared one recurring theme: Best Buy’s problems were due to “headwinds.” Best Buy, the story went, was gaining shares in key categories. But alas! The market environment for consumer electronics was a problem. So was the shift to online shopping and the fact that Amazon was not collecting sales tax. Apple Stores added to the headwinds. Prices on key products were deflating; the iPhone was making cameras, voice recorders, and music players redundant. ...

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