I recently got the new book, The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century.
It is definitely an interesting read, especially if you are in the tech sector.
One of the ideas that I liked was the phases that we have come through as a civilization:
- Phase One: Countries start working together
- Phase Two: Companies start working together
- Phase Three: Individuals from over the world start working together
I feel strongly about phase three. This happens every day for me. Someone helps me on a mailing list, I work with colleagues across the world, etc.
The book also talks about outsourcing, and how we (USA) isn’t prepared. I have been involved in projects that outsourced technology, some failed, and some succeeded, so I know both are possible.
I did like the fact that you can obviously use the time difference to your advantage (versus as a pain). I would love to have an assistent overseas, so when I go to bed I shoot off an email saying: “Can you take these ideas and give me a top class powerpoint presentation back?”, “Can you research X, Y, and Z wrt A, and have a summary in my inbox tomorrow morning?”.
Definitely worth thinking about.