DEALING WITH A RAPIDLY CHANGING WORLD

High technology in the world of work has changed the workplace dramatically in recent years. This trend will undoubtedly accelerate and spread. In the 1990s dot.coms and related small high-technology companies were emerging and evolving so rapidly that the greatest growth in jobs was in this economic sector. A lot of those companies
have since fallen by the wayside, but their influence has persisted and has changed how most businesses are run. More and more, larger companies are under pressure to show ever-improving quarterly earnings. To meet that demand for continuous growth, larger companies have been forced to adopt new technology just to survive.
Along with the high-technology innovations have come other significant changes in the work world, changes that have been economically or politically motivated such as the increasing government regulation of some industries and the deregulation of others. Technology changes have yielded many new products and services, such as the Internet and the Wal-Mart type of product distribution. In addition, globalization has dramatically increased the type and extent of business dealings in foreign markets.
These changes have made companies reorganize. Many companies have revised their key missions, have adopted techniques such as streamlining through total quality management (TQM), re engineering, have hired both basic and contingent work forces, and have learned to treat internal constituencies as customers. Emphasis has shifted from process to productivity. And a new breed of managers has evolved who can operate across functions in a loosely structured organization set up in project teams.
You’ve probably already been affected by this new environment:
You’re expected to get more done with less, to operate efficiently despite constant change and loose functional lines, to be a team player, to make decisions in a group context, to use diverse team members, to think in terms of overall systems, to foresee how your goals are affected by these changes, and finally to get others to adapt to these changes.

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