How do firms cope with changing environments? Is flexibility really the solution? How can we measure a firm's flexibility? Can a more flexible firm be created? Based on an Igor Ansoff Award-winning study and now available for the first time in paperback, Henk Volberda's Building the Flexible Firm shows how flexibility has become the new strategic challenge for contemporary firms. Although traditional organizational forms have worked well in the relativelystable environments of the past, the globalization of markets, rapid technological change, shortening product life cycles, and increasing aggressiveness of competitors have radically altered the ground rules for competing in the 1990s and beyond. Increased competition forces firms to move morequickly and boldly than before, and to experiment in ways that do not conform to traditional administrative theory. This book offers a wealth of insights into the way firms can increase their flexibility. It is based on extensive interviews with practitioners and supported by many longitudinal case studies on flexibility improvement within large corporations. The author provides a strategic framework whichexplains what types of flexibility are effective under different organizational conditions and environmental characteristics. He also demonstrates an integrated method for diagnosing a firm's flexibility and for guiding the transition to greater flexibility and responsiveness.