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Laura Huang with Edge: Turning Adversity into Advantage — HBE ENGAGE EVENT
June 10, 2020
Laura Huang is an associate professor at Harvard Business School; previously, she was an assistant professor at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Her research has been featured in the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Forbes, and Nature. Her research has won awards including a 2016 Kauffman Foundation Fellowship; Huang was named one of the 40 Best Business School Professors Under the Age of 40 by Poets & Quants. Her speaking and consulting clients include Google, Uber, BlackRock, Keystone, Bionic, and the Level Playing Field Institute. This is her first book.
About Edge: Turning Adversity into Advantage
Laura Huang, a preeminent Harvard Business School professor, shows that success is about gaining an edge: that elusive quality that gives you an upper hand and attracts attention and support. Some people seem to naturally have it. Now, Huang teaches the rest of us how to create our own from the challenges and biases we think hold us back, and turning them to work in our favor.
How do you find a competitive edge when the obstacles feel insurmountable? How do you get people to take you seriously when they’re predisposed not to, and perhaps have already written you off?
Laura Huang has come up against that problem many times–and so has anyone who’s ever felt out of place or underestimated. Many of us sit back quietly, hoping that our hard work and effort will speak for itself. Or we try to force ourselves into the mold of who we think is “successful,” stifling the creativity and charm that makes us unique and memorable.
In Edge, Huang offers a different approach. She argues that success is rarely just about the quality of our ideas, credentials, and skills, or our effort. Instead, achieving success hinges on how well we shape others’ perceptions–of our strengths, certainly, but also our flaws. It’s about creating our own edge by confronting the factors that seem like shortcomings and turning them into assets that make others take notice.
Huang draws from her award-winning research on entrepreneurial intuition, persuasion, and implicit decision-making, to impart her profound findings and share stories of previously-overlooked Olympians, assistants-turned-executives, and flailing companies that made momentous turnarounds. Through her deeply-researched framework, Huang shows how we can turn weaknesses into strengths and create an edge in any situation. She explains how an entrepreneur scored a massive investment despite initially being disparaged for his foreign accent, and how a first-time political candidate overcame voters’ doubts about his physical disabilities.
Edge shows that success is about knowing who you are and using that knowledge