Onward: How Starbucks Fought For Its Life without Losing Its Soul

Front Cover
Wiley, May 9, 2011 - Business & Economics - 352 pages
23 Reviews
In 2008, Howard Schultz, the president and chairman of Starbucks, made the unprecedented decision to return as the CEO eight years after he stepped down from daily oversight of the company and became chairman. Concerned that Starbucks had lost its way, Schultz was determined to help it return to its core values and restore not only its financial health, but also its soul. In Onward, he shares the remarkable story of his return and the company's ongoing transformation under his leadership, revealing how, during one of the most tumultuous economic times in history, Starbucks again achieved profitability and sustainability without sacrificing humanity.

Offering readers a snapshot of a moment in history that left no company unscathed, the book zooms in to show, in riveting detail, how one company struggled and recreated itself in the midst of it all. The fast paced narrative is driven by day-to-day tension as conflicts arise and lets readers into Schultz's psyche as he comes to terms with his limitations and evolving leadership style. Onward is a compelling, candid narrative documenting the maturing of a brand as well as a businessman.

Onward represents Schultz's central leadership philosophy: It's not just about winning, but the right way to win. Ultimately, he gives readers what he strives to deliver every day- a sense of hope that, no matter how tough times get, the future can be just as or more successful than the past, whatever one defines success to be.

"Through the lens of his personal leadership journey, with all of its dizzying ups and agonizing downs, Howard Schultz has written, with aching honesty and passion, the single most important book on leadership and change for our time and for every generation of leaders. This book is not just recommended reading, it's required."
Warren Bennis, Distinguished Professor of Business, University of Southern California, and author of the recently published Still Surprised: A Memoir of a Life in Leadership

"[This] sequel to the founding of Starbucks is grittier, more gripping, and dramatic, and [Schultz's] voice is winning and authentic. This is a must-read for anyone interested in leadership, management, or the quest to connect a brand with the consumer."
Publishers Weekly

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Review: Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

User Review  - Arash Narchi - Goodreads

It was nice reading the challenges of Howard's journey as an entrepreneur and how he had to innovate to get Starbucks back on the map, but he could've written that in 20 pages not 300. The rest of the ... Read full review

Review: Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

User Review  - Matthew - Goodreads

Admittedly, I'm a coffee snob. I prefer coffee made as a pour-over or in a French press. In fact, I'm the sort of person that drives Howard Schultz nuts, because I will rarely walk into a Starbucks ... Read full review

About the author (2011)

Howard Schultz is chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Starbucks Coffee Company. Howard moved to Seattle from his native New York and joined the company in 1982 as director of operations and marketing when Starbucks had only four stores. He has been recognized extensively for his passion, leadership, and efforts to strengthen communities, with honors including the Horatio Alger Award for those who have overcome adversity to achieve success; the Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh Award for Business Ethics given by Notre Dame University's Mendoza College of Business; the Botwinick Prize in Business Ethics from Columbia Business School; and the first ever John Wooden Global Leadership Award from UCLA Anderson School of Management. He has also been included in Time magazine's "Time 100," a list of the most influential people in the world. Howard and his wife, Sheri, live in Seattle and have two children.

The Starbucks Foundation and the CUP Fund
All of Howard Schultz's proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to the Starbucks Foundation, founded in 1997 to support the company's commitment to community; and the CUP Fund, founded by partners (employees) to provide financial relief to partners facing emergency situations that have unexpectedly impacted their life.

Joanne Gordon is a former Forbes writer who has spent more than a decade profiling companies and business leaders for numerous publications. She has written five previous books.

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