The worst of the economic crack-up has cleared (we hope). Companies and their leaders are getting back to the business of growth, innovation, and investment. But it's not easy shifting into high gear after spending two years in reverse. When is the right time to start hiring again? How do you keep costs down as you rev up for growth? Can you create a spirit of energy and excitement without making promises that you can't keep? This collection of dispatches offers a detailed map for companies and their leaders on the road to recovery. It covers all kinds of terrain: a software developer in Silicon Valley, a Japanese auto manufacturer, a Major League Baseball team, a flood-ravaged town in America's heartland. Our advice: Read the directions in these stories, and then chart your own course for a more robust and profitable future.