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Ten Rules for Success in the Next Millennium

January 3, 2000
Related Topics: Future Workplace, Featured Article
Rules that may mark the years to come:

Rule #1: Expect Volatility.
We are witnessing an exponential increase in the velocity, complexity, and unpredictability of change. This increase creates a hypercompetitive international environment that bears little resemblance to the one that existed even five years ago.

Rule #2: Invent New Rules.
Invent your own and make others follow you! Competitive advantages and profits will belong to innovators who transcend the existing parameters of competition.

Rule #3: Innovate or Die.
Develop conscious strategies and mechanisms to promote consistent innovation. Resting on your laurels is simply not an option: winners are innovating and surpassing themselves constantly.

Rule #4: Break Barriers.
21st Century companies must dismantle the internal barriers that so often separate people, departments and disciplines. The boundaries between firms and their outside suppliers, customers and sometimes even competitors are also under severe pressure.

Rule #5: Be Fast.
Implementation is everything and it better be fast. These days it's far better to be 80 percent right and quick than 100 percent and three months late.

Rule #6: Think Like an Entrepreneur.
The days of depending on corporate size and reputation to drop opportunities in your lap are over. Entrepreneurs go out and make things happen and allow themselves to fail and improve because of it.

Rule #7: Think Global.
The fastest growing markets in the world today are outside North America. Companies can and do now shop in a single global supermarket for just about everything.

Rule #8: Keep Learning.
At the end of the day, the only truly sustainable competitive advantage will be your ability to learn faster and better than your competitors, and to turn that learning into new products, services and technologies before your competitors can imitate your last innovation.

Rule #9: Measure Performance Differently.
Concentrate on key strategic and profitability drivers, ones that reveal the underlying dynamics of your business, focus your energy on what really drives the future success of your business.

Rule #10: Be Nice.
The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and hands and then work outward from there. If we improve ourselves by doing good for others, we build a solid bridge for success in the 21st century.

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