One top-flight executive who has exquisite reality recognition and thus survival skills has raised listening to a high art. His name is Andy Grove. Back in 2001, I interviewed Grove, then the CEO of Intel Corporation. He is a legend in the annals of technology and business. Grove discovered the impurity in silicon (sodium) and thus helped launch the whole computer age. He also co-founded Intel, the dominant manufacturer of computer chips and microprocessors. And he is known to be as tough as he is brilliant.
One of the themes I've heard from clients I train at companies like GE and Pfizer, is the importance of turning obstacles into opportunity. According to Accenture (2010), 71% of senior executives say it is the trait they are looking for in making retention and promotion choices. Business owners who can do this well keep their business afloat in difficult times.