Thomas L. Friedman’s book, The World Is Flat, demonstrates how barriers of competition are impacted through globalization in today’s business world. As companies and economies of all sizes are finding, the modernization and globalization of supply chains, production operations through multinational networks and availability of streamlined IT resources have transformed the competitive landscape into a level playing field.
Additionally, firms are now presented with a menu of investment opportunities that span the globe. These investments, which include the purchasing of materials from overseas vendors or stocks from foreign corporations to ...view middle of the document...
One of the most notable statements made by Friedman is that any work that can be digitized will flow to those who are best able to do it. This couldn’t be closer to the truth considering the occurrences during the recession of the past two years. As the economic downturn continued, the profitability of many companies decreased, therefore prompting the managers of these companies to seek out cost-reducing measures that would allow them to survive. For companies with components that are intangible in nature, such as customer service, but included a costly operational process, such as call centers, many of these measures led companies to downsize their existing labor force and outsource operations to foreign markets that could provide the same service for a lower cost.
While the reasoning behind these decisions are clear, the issues surrounding them, such as ethics and morals, quality decline, etc., should be taken most seriously by the labor force that is most impacted by these decisions. Friedman’s keys to success in a flat world (knowledge, skills, and a great work ethic) are what will create differentiators in the executives of tomorrow, and also some day bring about a balance in the impacts felt by globalization.
Ehrhardt, M. C., & Brigham, E. F. (2009). Corporate finance: A focused approach (3rd ed.). London: South-Western, Cengage Learning.
Friedman, Thomas. (2005). The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century. Farrar, Straus & Giroux.