What Works: Success in Stressful Times

What Works: Success in Stressful Times

Hamish McRae

Language: English

Pages: 356

ISBN: 0007203780

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Using examples ranging from Ikea to the slums of Mumbai, leading economic expert Hamish McRae studies which businesses, organisations and initiatives have what it takes to succeed, and what it is that distinguishes them in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.

Calling on years of experience as an award-winning financial journalist and international public speaker, the author brings a fresh perspective to the question of success, differentiating the few 'big ideas' that have transformed the marketplace from passing trends and over-hyped blind alleys.

Through an extraordinary range of case studies and an authoritative grasp of his material, the author demonstrates that although there is no surefire recipe for success, there are several key ingredients – such as sense of mission and market sensitivity – which ambitious readers can apply to their own business practices. This is a book of very real successes rather than overblown ideologies: each case study is based around an on-site visit by an author and interviews with the people in charge. Bearing in mind the role of fashion, scale and other less predictable factors, ‘What Works’ ultimately offers the general reader the chance to learn from some of the grandest economic successes and unexpected failures in the world today, through a series of imaginative, unusual and insightful examples.















Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) began alongside the main festival in 1947 with the original aim of screening the new wave of documentary films. That remit widened to include independent and art-house productions from around the world and its schedule now encompasses new international and UK films from both established and first-time directors. Steven Spielberg’s ET had its UK premiere at Edinburgh, and other films to have taken off in Britain from the EIFF springboard include The

at-still is-is exploiting opportunities as they arise. Indeed its whole ethos is not to plan but to respond with astonishing vigour to market signals. One effect has been to secure London’s position in international banking; another, to allow foreign banks to have the largest share in London’s business. A second example of this opportunistic approach-and its consequences-was the Big Bang of the 1980s. While London had become the largest single centre for international banking, its securities

underground railway system or better connections to its airports. And there are examples of cities building the wrong infrastructure-Montreal’s investment for the 1976 Olympics, for example. Canada built a new airport, Mirabel, which was planned to be the largest in land area in the world. From 1975 to 1997 Canada forced all international flights to land there. But it was wildly unpopular with airlines and passengers alike, being situated twenty-five miles from Montreal. All passenger flights

abusers.) However, in terms of government spending as a percentage of GDP, Hong Kong’s is very low at around 15 per cent14-much the same as that other authoritarian former British colony, Singapore. How does it manage to provide the social and other services at that level of spending? The answer is that people pay a contribution, even for services such as healthcare that are state-supported. The result is that in serious economic downturns, and Hong Kong is as vulnerable to these as anywhere

share of GDP being spent by it, remaining one of the smallest in the world. But that lean government it is also intrusive: it owns all the land and runs what is on some measures the second-largest industry, gambling. As a result, it quite overthrows conventional stereotypes. There are other examples. In Shanghai the municipal government has driven the growth of China’s largest city, with the Pudong project being the largest urban-building development in the world. The Australian government took

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