Fortune Makers: The Leaders Creating China’s Great Global Companies

Michael Useem et al. PublicAffairs, $27.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-61039-658-5
Four business school professors deliver a lively exploration of the Chinese way of doing business. As the introduction emphasizes, China’s economy has accelerated with astonishing speed in recent decades, and without the political liberties typically associated with capitalism. For readers interested in understanding this process from the inside, the authors describe how the leaders of Chinese companies such as Haier, Alibaba, and Lenovo think about business. They break down this unique mindset into seven key phrases or terms—“their own way forward,” “the learning company,” “strategic agility for the long game,” “talent management,” “the big boss,” “growth as gospel,” and “governance as partnership”—and devote a chapter to each. The authors also give a history of the growth of Chinese business in the 1980s and ’90s and provide highly detailed case studies from the companies under discussion. In the final chapter they observe that these once pioneering businesses have now attained a certain level of maturity and may become models for non-Chinese companies. The book also leaves readers with a question: with China’s culture shifting once again as a less-deferential generation enters the workforce, is the “China way” of business sustainable? (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/09/2017
Release date: 03/01/2017
Genre: Nonfiction
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