Company of the Future: How the Communications Revolution is Changing Management

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In "The Death of Distance", veteran journalist Frances Cairncross presented a disturbingly accurate vision of how new communications technologies would change our lives. Now, she turns her incisive eye on how the Internet will forever alter the role of management and the structure of the organization. Inspired by Cairncross' acclaimed "Economist" survey, this book argues that we've grossly underestimated the power of the Internet to change the way companies behave. We're entering a volatile period of fundamental organizational change from which will emerge a new type of company - one that will require a new set of leadership and management skills to run it. "The Company of the Future" boldly asserts that managers and their companies must embrace and exploit the very technologies that have upended their jobs and their businesses.And they must look inside - improving the relationships among managers and employees - before they can realize the enormous potential that new technologies hold for enabling collaboration with customers, suppliers, and partners. Managers must learn to wed both technological and human skills to succeed in this new organizational form. Cairncross outlines ten critical capabilities for surviving what may be the most revolutionary, even frightening period in corporate life.Managers must be ready and able to: recruit, motivate and manage talent; cater to their best customers and "fire" unprofitable ones; make fast, yet flexible, decisions under great uncertainty; filter, structure, and leverage knowledge; run collaborative alliances with a variety of partners; manage relationships with suppliers, customers, and employees; communicate effectively both online and offline; internally and externally; set protocols and standardize processes; foster a culture of openness and learning; and, lead with strength, knowledge, confidence, and courage. Setting the new agenda for managerial success, this insightful guide will help managers at all levels to anticipate and cope with the extreme challenges ahead in our networked world. Frances Cairncross is the Management Editor at "The Economist" and author of "The Death of Distance: How the Communications Revolution Is Changing Our Lives" (ISBN 157851438X, HBS Press) She resides in London, England.

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Harvard Business Review Press
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