The World is Flat: The Globalized World in the Twenty-first Century Paperback – 5 Jul 2007
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About the Author
Thomas Friedman has won the Pulitzer Prize three times for his work at The New York Times. He is the author of two best-selling books, From Beirut to Jerusalem, and The Lexus and the Olive Tree.
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Top Customer Reviews
Freidman makes a bold claim. Around 2000 a triple convergeance occurred which created a new historical era. Ten flatteners (i.e. changes) created a new, flatter, global playing field. Businesses and individuals (especially would-be zippies from India, China and the former Soviet Union) began to move from vertical to horizontal ways of creating value (i.e. doing business). People suddenly gained access to the flat world platform. Walls, ceiling and floors blew away. Out went command and control. In came connect and collaborate. Noone knows anymore who is exploiting who. Our jobs are being digitalized, automated and outsourced. To survive as a new untouchable middler you'd better become a great orchestrator, synthesizer, explainer, leverager, adapter, or a passionate personaliser. Failing that, just be brilliant, like Madonna or a cancer specialist. Failing that, just be well anchored, like a dustman.
Ok, I parody rather than paraphrase. Readable it always isn't. But that's got most of the bad stuff out of the way. Not all the quotes are bad: "It is a difference of degree so great - of low-cost interconnectivity, of individual empowerment, of global newworks for collaboration - that it is a difference in kind." This it least a bold and stimulating claim which is worthy of examination.Read more ›
The second part of the book primarily describes the US business leaders' inability to adapt new managerial styles combined with the inherent problem with a country that lacks educational opportunities for the majority of the population. Many of Friedman's new and innovative solutions to business problem in the US are based alone on cutting cost. This clearly demonstrates the inability of US business leaders to be innovative. The US managerial style to profit in business is the discount WallMart model with more for less. An approach that leaves US businesses crippled and open for hostile take over or filing chapter 11. If work and services truly move to the part of the world where it is done best and cheapest, next up are the CEO of all the major US based companies. The huge compensations packages they receive without providing worker, shareholder or the community with value tags their job as up for global sourcing. India, China or South Africa all have highly educated business leader at a fraction of the cost of a US executive.
Yes, it is verbose and brimming with personal anecdotes sometimes masquerading as hard data. But it still presents the enormous revolution -- a series of extraordinary events that have converged -- that is so overwhelming and rapid that most of us simply have not had time to even begin to process what is happening to us. You may not agree with everything he says -- including the solutions he suggests -- but this book is well worth reading. You don't have to agree with everything he says, and it is superficial in parts. Nevertheless I am certain that Americans and Western Europeans would be challenged by this book.
As a Career Counselor, I think there is much food for thought about the world of work and skills needed in tomorrow's marketplace ... which will be here much sooner than we think.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great read. Thoughtful economic concepts but written in layman's termsPublished 21 months ago by O. J. G. Thomas
This dynamic and intelligent book about globalisation is mainly based on interviews with key CEOs in the US, India and China,was first published in 2005. Read morePublished on 10 May 2014 by Alfred J. Kwak
Excellent service! Thank you very much! As good as it describer. Product in very good condition. Quick delivery as well. Arrived within 3 working days.Published on 15 Oct. 2011 by liliapony
Nothing but empty calories, fancy dressed-up metaphors, repetitions, and silly ranting. Having read Chang Ha-Joon's wonderful book Bad Samaritans, I decided to check out if this... Read morePublished on 24 Nov. 2010 by Marcus Aurelius
I quite enjoyed it. I saw it more as a bright and breezy (though very long) journalistic piece rather than as serious analysis.
Quite a few clichés. Read more
I think that if you're familiar with the internet, follow a few blogs, maybe you are aware of globalization, outsourcing and some real basic business principles then just skip this... Read morePublished on 4 Oct. 2010 by T. Davies
This book has opened my eyes. I have experienced many changes in business over the last 20 years, with the inception of the internet and globalization. Read morePublished on 29 Sept. 2010 by Michele Paloschi
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