‘Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe’: Fascinating New Book from Dr. George Friedman

A major new book by New York Times bestselling author and geopolitical forecaster George Friedman, with a bold thesis about coming events in Europe. This provocative work examines “flashpoints,” unique geopolitical hot spots where tensions have erupted throughout history, and where conflict is due to emerge again.

9781925106602With remarkable accuracy, Stratfor founder and Chairman George Friedman has forecasted coming trends in global politics, technology, population, and culture. In his long awaited and highly anticipated follow up to the New York Times bestsellers The Next 100 Years and The Next Decade, Freidman investigates the intersection of culture and conflict in FLASHPOINTS: The Emerging Crisis in Europe (Doubleday; January 27, 2015; $28.95).

In Flashpoints, Friedman focuses on Europe — the world’s cultural and power nexus for the past five hundred years… until now. Analyzing the most unstable, unexpected, and fascinating borderlands of Europe and Russia — and the fault lines that have existed for centuries and have been ground zero for multiple catastrophic wars — Friedman highlights, in an unprecedentedly personal way, the flashpoints that are smoldering once again.

The modern-day European Union was crafted in large part to minimize built-in geopolitical tensions that historically have torn it apart. As Friedman demonstrates, with a mix of rich history and cultural analysis, that design is failing. Flashpoints narrates a living history of Europe and explains, with great clarity, its most volatile regions: the turbulent and ever-shifting land dividing the West from Russia (a vast area that currently includes Ukraine, Belarus, and Lithuania); the ancient borderland between France and Germany; and the Mediterranean, which gave rise to Judaism and Christianity and became a center of Islamic life.

Through Friedman’s seamless narrative of townspeople and rivers and villages, a clear picture of regions and countries and history begins to emerge. Flashpoints is an engrossing analysis of modern-day Europe, its remarkable past, and the simmering fault lines that have awakened and will be pivotal in the near future. This is George Friedman’s most timely and, ultimately, riveting book.

Drawing on a trademark blend of historical analysis and geopolitical forecasting, in Flashpoints Friedman explores Europe’s dominance and upheaval through the twentieth century to reveal their basis in a specific set of cultural fault lines – flashpoints that remain volatile today and are due to erupt again.

Friedman asks the most important question facing global citizen today – have conflict and war actually been banished from Europe? Or is today’s period of comparative peace merely an interlude following the centuries of conflict that preceded it? We are now living through Europe’s test and to answer that question, must investigate centuries of European history to discover how today’s events will once again impact the rest of the world. Flashpoints offers a clearly explained, riveting look at the history that has led us to this moment, as well as the situations, conflicts, opportunities, and events to come.

“There is a temptation, when you are around George Friedman, to treat him like a Magic 8 Ball.” — The New York Times Magazine

George Friedman’s impressive track record in forecasting includes successful predictions covering the European financial and political crises, increased Russian aggression in its “Near Abroad,” the Arab Spring, and conflict in Syria. Flashpoints continues this tradition of correct calls with new predictions focused on the struggle for Ukraine, the fragmentation of Europe’s eastern frontier, hostility in Turkey, and the rise of right wing extremism throughout the continent at large.

George-Friedman About Dr. George Friedman – Speaker and Author on the Future of Geopolitics:

Dr. George Friedman is the Chief Executive Officer and founder of STRATFOR. Since 1996 Dr. Friedman has driven the strategic vision guiding STRATFOR to global prominence in private geopolitical intelligence and forecasting. A very popular keynote speaker on the future of international politics and economics, Dr. Friedman is in high demand at numerous conferences and industry-specific events for major financial firms such as JP Morgan, Citibank, Ernst & Young and many Fortune 500 companies. In addition he has briefed the Australian Command and Staff College, Eglin Air Force Research Laboratory, U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College and many other military and government organizations. Dr. Friedman is frequently invited to speak internationally, including in Turkey, Germany, Poland, Azerbaijan, Australia and New Zealand.

Dr. Friedman is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Next Decade: Where We’ve Been and Where We’re Going, which forecasts the major events and challenges that will test America and the American President over the course of the next decade. Dr. Friedman’s previous book, The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century was also a New York Times bestseller and was published in over 20 languages. His other books on warfare and intelligence have included America’s Secret War, The Future of War and The Intelligence Edge.

Major television and radio networks such as CNN, Fox News, and NPR frequently invite Dr. Friedman to appear as an international intelligence expert. He and STRATFOR have also been featured in cover stories in Barron’s and in the UK’s New Statesman. Dr. Friedman has been featured in Time Magazine, The New York Times Magazine and The Wall Street Journal. He is frequently quoted in The New York Times, Fortune, Newsweek, USA Today, the International Herald Tribune and many other publications.

Dr. Friedman received his bachelors degree from the City College of the City University of New York and holds a Ph.D. in government from Cornell University.

STRATFOR is a global intelligence company with its headquarters in Austin, Texas.

For more information, please visit The Sweeney Agency.

Speaker Booking Tip Number 7

One of the most important points to consider when picking a speaker to place on your agenda is this:

Business conference

What do you actually want the audience thinking when the speaker finishes speaking and they are heading into the next session?

Here are the 3 main outcomes from a speaker’s presentation.

1. “Wow that was inspiring/motivating/entertaining! I am glad they brought that speaker in. I am energized and ready for what’s next on the agenda.”
(Above is great if the audience is going into an update on the biz by the CEO or a presentation of some new idea you want them to embrace. You can end the event this way and send them off on a high, or start an event that has a lot of detailed content on the agenda.)
Who delivers this type of keynote? Adventurers / High Achievers / Overcoming Adversity Speakers.

2. “That was very interesting and useful. I can’t wait to get back to my office on Tuesday and use those ideas. Glad I came to this event! I learnt something practical that will help my business.”
(Above is great if the audience is heading into a break or a session with general content. Also they are inclined to share this info with people who weren’t at the event. “I learned this at the event.”)
Who delivers this type of keynote? Coaches on Leadership / Communication / Customer Service, etc.

3. “That was fascinating and really made me think. I should talk to my colleagues Frank and Susan about what I just heard.”
(Above is great if the audience is heading into break-out sessions or even lunch. This is the kind of talk they will quote to clients. “I was at an event last week and heard this fascinating expert on…”)
Who delivers this type of keynote? People with interesting views on the Economy / Trends / Technology.

If you can’t pick one, try and pick two with one as the major and the other as the minor.

Top 10 Keynote Speakers to Watch In 2015

At The Sweeney Agency, we are constantly gathering recent reviews and references on both our existing speakers as well as new additions to our roster, then tabulate the data to see who clients are picking as the best.

After careful consideration, we have narrowed down our Top 10 Speakers to Watch In 2015 in subjects ranging from Leadership and Increasing Sales Performance to Motivational Strategies and Business Management.

Top 10 for 2015

Mike Abrashoff – Former Commander, USS Benfold and Author of It’s Your Ship
Mike Abrashoff’s inspiring speeches challenge people to re-imagine their own leadership thinking and instill a renewed responsibility for results and success. At the age of 36, the Navy selected Abrashoff to become Commander of USS Benfold at the time, the most junior commanding officer in the Pacific Fleet. The immediate challenges that faced him on this underperforming Naval war ship were staggering: exceptionally low morale, high turnover and unacceptably low performance evaluations. Few thought that this ship could improve. In many ways, the USS Benfold was actually an extreme example of the same problems facing many organizations today.

Robyn Benincasa – Firefighter and Motivational Adventure Racer
Robyn Benincasa – NYT Best-Selling Author of How Winning Works: 8 Essential Leadership Lessons from the Toughest Teams on Earth – accepts full blame for inspiring people to do insane things like climb Mount Kilimanjaro, run their first triathlon, start their own adventure racing teams, or start their own businesses. This is, after all, who she is and what she does: Robyn Benincasa inspires people to do amazing things. Her unforgettable presentations have taught countless high-performance leaders all over the world about Building World Class Teams and the followership skills necessary for dynamic role shifting and true teamwork.

Ty Bennett – Speaker on Leadership, Communication and Entrepreneurship
With a natural ability to engage and empower others, Ty Bennett draws on his experience in the trenches to share real and tangible techniques about the principles of leadership that continue to create his success. The founder of Leadership Inc., who has been featured as one of the Top 40 Under 40, Ty is a young fresh voice providing interactive presentations that are engaging, dynamic and inspiring.

Reva Bhalla – Stratfor Vice President of Global Analysis and Speaker on International Politics
Reva Bhalla regularly represents Stratfor at speaking events in the United States and abroad. She provides an audience of decision-makers and sophisticated news consumers around the world with unique insights into political, economic and military developments. She uses her area of expertise combined with geopolitical analysis to produce penetrating explanations and forecasts of world events. This independent, non-ideological content enables users to better understand international events and reduce risks and identify opportunities in every region of the globe.

Dan Clark – Inspirational Speaker on Teamwork and Sales
Dan Clark is CEO of a multi-million dollar corporation, an internationally recognized speaker, champion athlete, entertainer, and author. He is the primary contributing author to the best-selling series, Chicken Soup for the Soul. Dan Clark draws on his experience in the world of sports and business and shares inspirational stories that offer insight into change, motivation, teamwork, and sales.

Mark C. Crowley – Leadership and Management Author
Mark C. Crowley spent over 25 years in the dog-eat-dog world of financial services, an environment known for its heartlessness and “take no prisoners” attitude. Twice, he held national-level responsibilities – most recently as Senior Vice President-National Manager for Investment Product Sales at one of America’s largest financial institutions, where he was named “Leader of the Year.” What he ultimately discovered is that his chosen management style was highly uncommon, yet extraordinarily productive. His teams constantly excelled. When asked what he was doing differently, Mark replied, “It’s the same disciplined approach others have with numbers and production… but mine is with people. You could say I manage the emotional side of work. I intentionally make people feel valued. I identify their raw talents and seek ways to further develop them. I express my deep belief in them, proactively teach them skills and make a deliberate point of honoring and recognizing all their achievements.”

Ryan Estis – Speaks on Business Performance, Leadership and Sales
Ryan Estis has dedicated his career to helping both companies and individual contributors leverage change as a catalyst to achieve breakthrough performance. Using his two decades of hands on business experience the former McCann World Group Advertising Chief Strategy Officer is widely regarded as a leading expert on Culture, Leadership, Sales Effectiveness and the Future of Work.

Steve Gilliland – Motivational Speaker and Author on Teamwork and Leadership
A member of the Speaker Hall of Fame, Steve Gilliland is one of the most in-demand and top-rated speakers in the world. His keynotes are motivational and help inspire better teamwork and leadership. Recognized by his peers as a master storyteller and brilliant comedian, he can be heard daily alongside Jerry Seinfeld and Jeff Foxworthy on SiriusXM Radio’s Laugh USA and Blue Collar Radio. With an appeal that transcends barriers of age, culture and occupation–plus an interactive and entertaining style–Steve shows audiences how to open doors to success in their careers, their relationships and their lives. He speaks to more than 250,000 people a year and has shared the platform with numerous dignitaries. Over two million people have heard him speak, with his audiences crossing over 29 different industries. Steve has the distinction of speaking in all 50 states and in 15 countries. As one newspaper stated, Steve is what happens when the humor of Ron White collides with the inspiration of Zig Ziglar.

David Goldsmith – Leadership and Management Expert
Over the past 29 years, David Goldsmith, author of the book Paid to THINK and president of the Goldsmith Organization, has captivated audiences with his hard hitting, innovative, comprehensive and consultative approach to presenting. It’s not uncommon for David’s research to be so extensive that the CEO of a $14B company remarked, “You understand our business as much as our executive management team.” The pre-presentation research translates into fresh, relevant on-stage content that is anything but the same old presentation you’d hear from one venue to the other. David delivers new models, tools, and insights that are innovative, meaty, and transformative which generates new paradigms for listeners. David is direct in his approach and is known for a consultative presentation style that provides solutions universally to decision makers worldwide. As a result, audience members are empowered to take action and effect change immediately after sitting in on his programs.

Marilyn Tam – Author and Speaker on Leadership, Productivity, and Diversity
Marilyn Tam, Ph.D. is a Speaker, Author, Consultant, Board Certified Executive/Corporate Coach, CEO of Marilyn Tam & Co. and Founder and Executive Director of Us Foundation. She was formerly the CEO of Aveda Corp., President of Reebok Apparel and Retail Group; Vice President of Nike Inc. and also a successful entrepreneur who has built four companies. She is now an international selling author, and she speaks, facilitates workshops and consults with corporations, organizations and people to achieve greater success and happiness. Marilyn helps people and organization find and fulfill their life purpose, and provide them with the principles and actions steps to take them their goals. Her NPR (Net Promoter Score), the industry standard for measuring customer satisfaction, from her clients is among the highest rated of all speakers.

*Speakers are listed in alphabetical order