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Summary and Conclusions

This chapter describes why even very successful organizations face an urgent need to change, why these changes must be a high priority, and the issues to be addressed in making the changes. The chapter makes four principal points:

  1. The corporate leaders of today are not likely to be the leaders of tomorrow because of the accelerating pace of industrial change, a phenomenon that Joseph Schumpeter called "creative destruction."
  2. As Schumpeter also pointed out, the rules of successful competition are changing, and the things that made today's businesses successful are not the things that will make businesses successful in the future.
  3. Businesses face two principal challenges in making the management changes that will allow them to remain competitive in the marketplace. The first challenge is managing the problems of size; this problem is discussed more fully in Chapter 2.
  4. The second challenge is making knowledge work productive. As Peter Drucker said, this will be the decisive factor for future success. This topic is discussed further in Chapter 3, and the balance of this book outlines a strategy for addressing the challenges of managing knowledge work and knowledge workers.
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