Thank You for Being Late

An Optimist's Guide to thriving in the age of Accelerations

Thomas L. Friedman, FARRAR STRAUSS & GIROUX, 496 p., 2016


  • Sinn und Werte
  • Innovation und Veränderung

The Great Acceleration, or 'what the hell happened in 2007?' The seventh book by Friedman, one of the most opinionated columnists in the U.S. (New York Times) has several excellent qualities: it helps in understanding the rapid acceleration due to technology, cue Moore's Law. Exciting to trace the developments in context. It also shows how in this time of acceleration the new political situation after the end of the cold war has created overburdened states and the whole scenario is increased by the climatic changes. Everything is connected with everything: Politics, economy, nature.

What can companies do, what can managers do? First of all, the author does not leave it at the dangers, but shows that we can do better. He lists competencies that are particularly important for the current challenges. Ethical innovation, for example, to implement sustainability. Friedman shares insights from his extensive travels and also shares his surprises about simple solutions (chickens, gardens, and the Internet) with the reader in a comprehensible way. In any case, trust and community living are an absolute necessity to successfully deal with challenges. Toward the end of the book, Friedman offers a 12-point program for how government can support positive development. He calls for ethical competence and the courage to make good decisions for society as a whole from everyone in leadership positions. Only in this way can the social capital emerge from which, in turn, solutions can grow.

Absolutely recommendable for all those who want to understand the economic-political-social interrelationships by means of concrete details. The book creates confidence and hope and gives concrete examples of how society and the economy can succeed.

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