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Turbulent Times Ahead

In turbulent times, the first task of management is to make sure of the institution’s capacity to survive a blow.

In turbulent times, the first task of management is to make sure of the institution’s capacity for survival, to make sure of its structural strengths, of its capacity to survive a blow, to adapt to sudden change, and to avail itself of new opportunities. Turbulence, by definition, is irregular, nonlinear, erratic. But its underlying causes can be analyzed, predicted, managed.

What management should—and can—manage is the single most important new reality underlying a great deal of the turbulence around: the sea-change in population structure and population dynamics, and especially the shift in population structure and population dynamics in the developed countries of the West and Japan. These shifts are already changing the modes of economic integration throughout the world. They are likely to lead to a new “transnational confederation” based on production sharing and market control, replacing in many areas the old “multinational corporation” based on financial control. They are creating new consumer markets and realigning existing old consumer markets. They are drastically changing the labor force to the point where there will only be “labor forces,” each with different expectations and different characteristics. They will force us to abandon altogether the concept of “fixed retirement age.” And they will create a new demand on management—as well as a new opportunity—to make organized plans for redundancy.

ACTION POINT: Define the underlying causes of turbulence affecting your enterprise today. What steps should you take now to protect your organization and to allow it to thrive in the midst of turbulence?

Managing in Trubulent Times (Hardcover)

* Source: The Daily Drucker by Peter F. Drucker

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