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Since the mid-1980s, organizations have scrambled to compete with a changing global environment that has demanded the development of new operating strategies. The picture of business in the 1950s showed little need for change. However, that picture in the 2000s is dramatically different. Had someone told a group of managers that organizations in the 21st century would be seeking ways over a period of 18 to 36 months to increase productivity by 20 percent to 50 percent, improve quality by 30 percent to 100 percent, while increasing new-product development by 30 percent to 80 percent, they would have scorned the informant.

Changes in technology and communications, such as Internet capabilities, have expanded the operations of business globally, and organizations have had to adapt through changes ...

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