Winning in business today is not about being number one--it's about who "gets to the future first", write management consultants Gary Hamel and CK Prahalad. In Competing for the Future, they urge companies to create their own futures, envision new markets and reinvent themselves.
Hamel and Prahalad caution that complacent managers who get too comfortable in doing things the way they have always done will see their companies fall behind. For instance, the authors consider the battle between IBM and Apple in the 1970s. Entrenched as the leading mainframe-computer maker, IBM failed to see the potential market for personal computers. That left the door wide open for Apple, which envisioned a computer for every man, woman and child. The authors write, "At worst, laggards follow the path of greatest familiarity. Challengers, on the other hand, follow the path of greatest opportunity, wherever it leads". They argue that business leaders need to be more than "maintenance engineers", worrying only about budget cutting, streamlining, re-engineering, and other old tactics. Definitely not for dilettantes, Competing for the Future is for managers who are serious about getting their companies in front. --Dan Ring, Amazon.com