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***Editor’s note: Extreme Competition: Innovation and the Great 21st Century Business Reformation, Peter Fingar, Meghan-Kiffer Press, 2006, is available here. Note: see the 1-minute video trailer for the book at http://www.mkpress.com/extreme.

Although mainstream economic thought holds that America’s history of creativity and entrepreneurialism will allow it to adapt to the rise of such emerging economies as India and China, I think that is so much wishful thinking. Globalization will not only finish off what’s left of American manufacturing, but will turn so-called knowledge workers, which were supposed to be America’s competitive advantage, into just another global commodity. —Andy Grove, Co-Founder, Intel and Author of Only the Paranoid Survive

Extreme Competition sounds a penetrating wake-up call to governments, companies, and individuals alike. There are some fierce new competitors on the block, ready to engage your company, and you personally, in extreme competition. They play hardball and dominate their industries. They innovate by how they operate, how they deliver their services, how they do what they do, the ways they conduct their business operations at the delight of their customers. They go beyond just delivering products or services, and, as Starbucks taught us, on to delivering experiences that command a premium, and even change lifestyles. Through their laser scopes, fierce new competitors have their eyes on you and your company. Your customers are their target, and they’d do almost anything to take them away from you.

There is no doubt something new is going on in business, though it may not be clear exactly what. You, your company, or your industry may already feel the heat. Indeed, there is a next big thing in business, but it’s not about dot-com booms; it’s about operational innovation and business transformation, driven by the emergence of a wired world. To distill this great 21st century business transformation and what it portends for businesses and individuals, BPM expert and author, Peter Fingar, reached out to fourteen experts from India, China, Europe, Japan, Australia, Korea, Singapore and the Mid-East to bring up-to-the minute research to the book’s pages. Those experts brought fresh information you’d only hear around the water cooler in high-tech organizations in Shanghai, London, Bangalore, Taipei, Tokyo, Hyderabad, Sydney, Riyadh, Manama, Seoul and Singapore—stepping up to the plate to make this synthesis and distillation reflect a global snapshot of the new world of extreme competition. Although they were continents apart during the development of the book, they were virtual office mates through their many collaborations using Skype Internet telephone, messaging and file sharing—total cost of collaborating this way? $Zero! Such intimate interaction with individual knowledge workers, scattered around the globe, wasn’t possible before the world was wired, and gives you a hint of what this book is about—extreme collaboration without borders.


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