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The flexible firm has become an integral part of world business practice and is becoming increasingly important in a firms quest to maintain and enhance profitability in what has become an increasingly competitive market with the onset and development of globalisation - a phenomenon which has undoubtedly created what can be deemed the new economy Indeed it can certainly be argued that the flexible firm is extremely evident and applicable in Australia and perhaps one of the best industries to study these changes and the characteristics of a flexible firm is the airline industry of Australia which has over the last 20 years endured unprecedented deregulation and change Indeed there is little doubt that the notion of the flexible firm is extremely applicable to the commercial world of the 21st century in Australia The Globalisation Phenomenon had a drastic impact on the world in the late 20th century and much of this change is ongoing and will continue in years to come Indeed while the golden era of capitalism was primarily national the last twenty years of the twentieth century saw a greatly increased transnationalisation of economic social and cultural relations Munck 2001 53 The impacts have been drastic and this is particularly evident in industrial relations where this new era of globalisation is having a decisive impact on workers worldwide though much of the flourishing globalisation literature seems to ignore workers as a whole Munck Globalisation whether viewed as the panacea for the new century of demonised as the source of all our evils has become the new common sense for our era Munck 2001 51 It can certainly be said that Globalisation offers opportunities but also exacerbates risk World Bank 1995 124 given the fact that globalisation has the potential to cripple many of the worlds smaller companies as trans-national corporations expamd Indeed this further highlights the need for attention to achieving flexible firms to guarantee sustainability in the marketplace John
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