The Core Competence of the Corporation

by C.K. Prahalad and Gary Hamel

THE MOST POWERFUL WAY to prevail in global competition is still invisible to many companies. During the 1980s, top executives were judged on their ability to restructure, declutter, and delayer their corporations. In the 1990s, they’ll be judged on their ability to identify, cultivate, and exploit the core competencies that make growth possible—indeed, they’ll have to rethink the concept of the corporation itself.

Consider the last ten years of GTE and NEC. In the early 1980s, GTE was well positioned to become a major player in the evolving information technology industry. It was active in telecommunications. Its operations spanned a variety of businesses including telephones, ...

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