Fast Company is about to get a little faster. The June:July 1998 issue marks our last as a bimonthly magazine. Starting with the August issue, subscribers will receive Fast Company monthly. Our goal: to deliver a magazine that follows the competitive mantra of the new economy – “faster, cheaper, better!”
Nothing in the new world of work stands still or stays the same for very long. Certainly this magazine doesn’t. In an economy that runs on change, Fast Company is both a chronicler of change and a participant in it: Witness our introduction in this issue of a new feature – The Big Questions – that will reappear from time to time in future issues. (And stay tuned for more editorial innovations in coming months.) That focus on change is part of our charter and of our personality. It’s also an important part of the value that we aim to create for you every time you pick up the magazine.
How do we define that value? As we move toward publishing monthly, all of us at Fast Company have been looking carefully at what we stand for and how we deliver on it. We want to stay true to the magazine’s original spirit, and to improve its performance in ways that you’ve suggested.
So what does bringing Fast Company to you mean to us? First, we mean to open windows. We want to ventilate the all-too-stuffy business world by introducing you to the newest ideas, the most useful tools – and the most compelling applications for those ideas and tools. Second, we mean to knock down doors. Forget conventional wisdom and the old institutional practices. Today there are new work styles and lifestyles, new yardsticks for success, new measurements for personal achievement. We want to go beyond the same old companies, beyond the familiar names and faces that seem to populate most business publications. We want to introduce you to the remarkable – and previously undiscovered – people and teams that are inventing new best practices. And third, we mean to be a hands-on work magazine – a personal resource to help you get things done.
Issue by issue, we measure our success by the number of articles you tear out, the number of yellow stickies you attach to them, and the number of conversations they spark.
How we deliver on our mission is as important as the mission itself. Much like the people and companies we write about, Fast Company seeks to integrate the way we work with the work we do. For us, that means creating a seamless blend of the magazine’s performance and its material, of its context and its content. And so we have sought to create a magazine with a distinct personality: an irrepressible pathfinder, a trailblazer that’s ahead of the curve, a discoverer of real people who are grappling with real problems in real companies. More than just accuracy, we aspire to authenticity – the ring of truth. We also aspire to speak with a voice that is all our own: a voice that is passionate and positive, spirited and direct, honest and entertaining. Like the best kinds of workplaces, our voice suggests an approach to business that is at once serious and fun.
Finally, a note on our look and feel: Fast Company has a bold, fresh design that reflects the exhilaration and the challenge, the nerve and the verve, of the people and companies that are making a mark on the new economy. Thus, a special salute to Art Director Patrick Mitchell and his design team: Emily Crawford, Gretchen Smelter, and Rebecca Rees. They recently garnered 19 awards – including 3 silver medals – from the Society of Publication Designers for their work on Fast Company, and a spot for the magazine as a finalist for the National Magazine Award for excellence in design.
As we switch gears from bimonthly to monthly, we need to hear from you: Let us know how we’re doing. Are we staying true to our mission? We still want to open windows, knock down doors, and offer hands-on tools. We just want to do these things faster, cheaper, better – and more often.