Many of the most respected firms are one-man shows

02/28/2013 | CNNMoney/Fortune · CNNMoney/Fortune

Forbes' annual ranking of the world's most respected companies reports that seven of the top 10 are essentially one-man shows -- companies such as Amazon, Starbucks and Berkshire Hathaway that depend on the vision and charisma of a single strong leader. That's largely due to the changing nature of the business world, writes Geoff Colvin. "In an information-based economy, a company can rocket to industry dominance and a towering valuation in the space of a founder's career, much faster than in an industrial economy," he explains.

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CNNMoney/Fortune · CNNMoney/Fortune

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