Fast Company's Greatest Hits: Ten Years of the Most Innovative Ideas in Business

Mark N. Vamos, Editor, David Lidsky, Editor, James C. Collins, Foreword by . Portfolio $24.95 (328p) ISBN 978-1-59184-118-0

At the end of its first decade, Fast Company hit a down note and sold for peanuts after years of disappointing ad sales. This compilation of articles shows why the business magazine deserved better. In late 1995, it set out to get readers excited about the new, Internet-driven world of business, aiming to create "the language of the revolution." To some extent, it succeeded, becoming the flagship publication of the new economy with attention-grabbing layouts and a populist, socially conscious tone. This book's 32 articles, presented in chronological order, offer an engaging survey of the past 10 years ' management ideas, profiles, trends and rising stars—JetBlue, Craigslist, the iMac, outsourcing to India, the new employer-worker social contract. But the book lacks the magazine's design-fueled energy and, more seriously, some of the ideas are simply outdated. Nor do the brief introductions always provide necessary context. For instance, Daniel Pink's 1997 article on "Free Agent Nation" envisions a glorious future for freelancers, but Ron Lieber's 2000 investigation of "permatemps" at Microsoft warns of "free agency's dark side." There's a reason why few business books stay in print more than a couple of years: examples and lessons become obsolete all too quickly—especially during a revolution. (July 6)

Reviewed on: 05/08/2006
Release date: 07/01/2006
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