An overview of the articles in this month's issue, including a look at the antiheroic company featured in Michael Hopkins' cover story and the new business ethics column, "Black and White."
Right from our launch, we've taken pride in making Inc. a place where, among other things, readers discover great companies while they're still in their infancy. The first issue of Inc.--in April 1979--included a story about a brash young computer company out in Cupertino, Calif., that had taken its name from a fruit. In 1983, Oracle made its debut in the magazine: it appeared on that year's Inc. 500 list, having just posted sales of $5 million. Microsoft made its first public appearance in Inc. the following year, when its $50 million in revenues earned it a spot on the Inc. 500, too. What those companies, and countless others like them that have appeared in our pages, have in common is that they're "heroic organizations"--companies whose success is dependent on the vision and charisma of one individual.
While I like reading about larger-than-life entrepreneurial exploits as much as the next person (hell, I've published enough of them), the moral of stories about such companies is often the same: Be brilliant. Be lucky. Better still, be both. Our cover story, " The Antihero's Guide to the New Economy," by executive editor Michael Hopkins, has nothing to do with luck or individual brilliance. Though the company it profiles, PRT, is destined for stardom, and PRT's founder, Doug Mellinger, is already being talked about by those who know him as "the next Bill Gates," what makes Mellinger noteworthy is that he's well on his way to building the first world-class "antiheroic" company we've seen.
One of the hottest topics in business these days is ethics. If you doubt it, just try being the editor-in-chief of a business magazine. You won't believe the abuse you'll take for publishing articles that even obliquely raise ethical questions.
Well, from now on, this beat belongs to executive editor Jeffrey L. Seglin, the author of our new ethics column, " Black and White." In the future, if you have an ethical bone to pick with Inc., write to him. But be forewarned. Unlike me, Seglin is trained for this job. He's a graduate of the Harvard Divinity School.
January is probably as appropriate a time as any to introduce you to some of the people who have joined our staff in recent months. Karen Dillon recently was named deputy editor, the second-in-command here in editorial. Previously, Dillon was the editor and publisher of The American Lawyer and was responsible for the overall editorial and business direction of the magazine, which won numerous honors during her tenure. Leigh Buchanan joined us in May as the editor of Inc. Technology. Previously, she was a founding editor of WebMaster, the first print publication dedicated to the business issues of the Web, and was an editor at CIO magazine. Joseph Rosenbloom, our newest senior editor, worked for the past 10 years as a staff reporter for Frontline, the PBS documentary series, for which he won an Emmy and a George Foster Peabody Award for investigative reporting.
Then there's Jeanmarie Fiocchi-Marden, who was working as an art teacher in Sewell, N.J., when we discovered her. Fiocchi-Marden, who had spent eight years as a graphic designer before becoming a teacher, did such outstanding work as a temporary assistant art director that we offered her a job. It's the first time here at Inc. that anyone has accepted a job offer on the condition that he or she wouldn't have to start until after high school graduation.
Deputy editor Karen Dillon knows egos: before joining Inc., she was the editor of The American Lawyer.
Inc. Technology editor Leigh Buchanan saw so much potential in the Web that she cofounded a magazine devoted to it.
Senior editor Joseph Rosenbloom brought cool bookends with him: an Emmy and a Peabody.
Associate art director Jeanmarie Fiocchi-Marden left the blackboard jungle for the business jungle.