The Power of Flexing: How to Use Small Daily Experiments to Create Big Life-Changing Growth (Hardcover)
A leadership and learning expert shows you how to change your behavior, develop soft skills, and achieve personal and professional growth through a series of small experiments she calls “Flexing.”
A personnel shift at your organization puts you into a leadership role you don't feel prepared for.
Your boss tells you that you seem aloof and unapproachable in client meetings.
You need to win the support of the members of a local community group for a project you feel passionate about.
Addressing these diverse issues depends on improving your soft skills—such as time management, team building, communication and listening, creative thinking, and problem-solving. But this isn’t as easy as it may seem.
Sue Ashford, the chair of the Management and Organizations group at the Ross School of Business, has the solution. In this timely book, she introduces Flexing—a technique individuals, teams, and entire organizations can use to learn, grow, and develop their skills and knowledge with every new project, work assignment, and problem. Flexing empowers you to embrace any challenge and adapt to any change, yielding practical, valuable takeaways that ensure growth.
Flexing helps you move ahead when you’re confronted with a new challenge, or simply want to develop a vital skill. It’s a journey that begins with setting a flex goal—stating explicitly what you want to learn and how you want to grow. Once that flex goal is set, you then begin to run experiments, solicit feedback from peers or colleagues, and monitor and tweak your progress on the way to achieving your goal. Flexing can be tailored to each person, allowing you to reflect on your own experiences and incorporate the lessons you learn in the next project you tackle. It’s a growth mindset that will help you become the best version of yourself.
Flexing also works with teams and organizations. Ashford teaches small groups and large how to implement flexing to ensure their members are ready for new challenges. With more people moving to remote working full-time and developing new ways of collaborating in teams, this warm and practical guide will help every professional and any organization on the journey to greater effectiveness.
About the Author
Susan (Sue) J. Ashford holds the Michael and Susan Jandernoa Professorship and is chair of the Management and Organizations group at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. Her academic work has been published in all the top journals in her field and she has been recognized with two lifetime achievement awards for her scholarship from the Academy of Management. Her academic work has been published in the Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, Strategic Management Journal, and the Journal of Applied Psychology. She lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Sue Ashford’s evidence-based book illustrated with compelling examples teaches us the art of flexing and masterfully helps us thrive in a constantly changing world. For anyone who wants to grow on the job, this is a book for building the skills needed for a lifetime of career success and fulfillment.
— Scott Sonenshein, bestselling author of Stretch and co-author (with Marie Kondo) of Joy at Work
Flexing will begin by improving your work, it will then become a habit, and soon enough it will have changed your life.
— Gianpiero Petriglieri, author, professor, speaker, and Thinkers50 Listee
I can't wait to share her key lessons with my MBA and executive students. Sue's wisdom on flexing is on point and on time for all of us (including me!).
— Dolly Chugh, author of The Person You Mean to Be