Speed

Topics: Economics, Company, Asset Pages: 5 (1701 words) Published: November 29, 2014
Structure for essay on Speed:
This century is witnessing a profound transformation in the nature of business organizations. Driven by new competitive demands and fuelled by an abundance of capital, companies have massively rearranged their portfolios, adding and discarding businesses to sharpen their strategic focus. The opening of markets, global competition, widespread industry deregulation, and the erosion of trade union power as a result of neoliberalism has created a new context in which organizations operate.

The internet today, with stunning speed, is profoundly changing the way we work, do business and communicate. As a consequence, we have truly entered the post-industrial economy. An economy that places the greatest value on information, services, support and distribution.

In today’s world, timing is everything. Speed is becoming a critical success factor. First movers enjoy significant advantages, and those who wait too long strive for survival. Firms like Kodak, MySpace and Blackberry have all moved too slow as organizations, and now their leaders, owners, and employees are suffering the negative consequences. In contrast, firms like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon that are “built for speed” have grown and prospered because of that ability to move fast. This could also be shown in the world of fast fashion. Retailers like H&M and Zara have a fast response system that encourages disposability. Those firms have been criticized for unsustainable and ethical conduct, however, they are making substantial profits and putting higher-end companies like D&G and Prada to rethink their strategies to keep pace of competition.

The fundamental belief that ‘bigger is better’ has made companies diversify their portfolios in unprecedented ways.

There is nothing new about speeding up work. As we moved from premodern to post modern organizations, speed has always been a critical factor. Speed could be traced back from Taylor’s scientific management principles and Ford’s production line. The postmodern organization represents a move away from the modern Fordist
 production systems characterised by mass standardised production towards more 
flexible production systems (Piore and Sabel, 1984). Through the adoption of “flexible
 specialisation” organizations began to produce customised goods and services in an 
efficient and timely fashion. It was always about trying to produce more to get profits. However what is distinctive about the contemporary emphasis on speed is its apparent contestability. We have internalized speed as something desirable. This resulted in a chansge in the nature of organization. It is not about producing something but about profit and having financial value. Speed could be understood as a discourse.

In fact, the study of dromoeconomics by both Virilio and Marx focused on excess speed, overproduction, hypercapitalism, war and trade. Virilio studied the science of speed. He believed that the logic of acceleration lies at the heart of the organization and transformation of the modern world. Both of them pointed out that we are living in a political economy of speed. Paul Virilio has spoken of the contemporary significance of approaching the history of the world not merely from the perspective of the political economy of wealth, of money and capital, but also from the standpoint of the political economy of speed. Economic globalization is simply unthinkable without the exploitation of the speed of light or, to put it another way, without the whole spatial and temporal transformation of our world. Armitage and Graham have described this contemporary “dromoeconomic” order of the political economy of speed as hypercapitalism, as a form of accelerated capitalism founded on processes of circulation and on increasingly ephemeral or symbolic commodities associated with ICTs.

The hypermodern organization uses acceleration as a factor of production proportionately more than ever...
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