Fight Back

A collection of Web-exclusive stories about September 11 and its aftermath.


In this period of great uncertainty, Fast Company recommits itself to the ideas and values that this enterprise has stood for over the past five years. Freedom to pursue our dreams and launch innovative products and services. Joy in our work and in our colleagues. And an optimism that the confluence of new technologies, new ways of working, and new approaches to power and leadership will move the world in a positive direction.


In the days, weeks, and months following September 11, we sought to highlight the freedom, joy, and optimism alive in the physical and emotional rubble of the twin towers and the Pentagon. This index of Web-exclusive features contains some of our best stories on the business community’s responses, our readers’ recovery, and various experts’ reflections following the terrorist attacks on the United States.

Read this collection of stories, and add your voice to Sound Off below.

Business Fights Back

Building Space

Who can blame people for feeling uneasy now in the workplace? One design visionary says this is the time to rethink the American office — and to design in a new look, feel, and sense of compassion. Anni Layne Rodgers


Fear: A Next Growth Business?

At the conference of the American Society of Industrial Security, companies showed off mission-critical technologies and wrestled with the challenges of hypergrowth. A dispatch from the anxiety economy. Scott Kirsner

Hard Times in Little Kabul

Afghan businesses in the Fremont, California area are suffering fallout from the terrorist attacks. But patriotic Afghan-Americans are hopeful that customers will return before it’s too late. Fara Warner

Miracle Workers

Amid the rubble of lower Manhattan, companies are working miracles to get their operations back to work. Firsthand reports from the New York Board of Trade, a Verizon switching center at 140 West Street, and other places under (re)construction. Keith H. Hammonds


Open for Business

How do the owners and employees of a small restaurant in Brooklyn respond to a world-changing tragedy just a few miles away? Not by fleeing or closing, but by staying open for business and serving the needs of the neighborhood. Ron Lieber

Raise the Roof

SpectraSite is a small company with big real-estate holdings in the New York area: 1,200 rooftops. After September 11, SpectraSite did its part by searching for more rooftops to house antennas that may ease the city’s communications logjam. Charles Fishman

Sharper Image

The FBI is turning to a small Boston software firm for help in transforming surveillance video into high-resolution images — and then using the pictures to help track terrorists. Call it the ultimate killer app. Linda Tischler


Tools of the Trade Center

Learn how handheld computers and GPS systems are helping fire chief Joseph Pfeifer run a streamlined evidence-tracking operation on the world’s largest crime scene: ground zero. Fara Warner

Community in Crisis

Add Your Voice

In the days and weeks following September 11, Fast Company readers from as far away as Australia, Malaysia, and Singapore expressed their revulsion and offered their support. Read their thoughts, and then add your own reflections and suggestions. Fast Company

When Bill Shunn decided to play Good Samaritan on September 11, he raised a crucial question: How can the United States use the Web more effectively to respond to calamities? Daniel H. Pink


Friends in Deed

The Fast Company readers’ network is working to implement long-term disaster-relief efforts that get to the real heart of community. Learn how 40,000 grassroots leaders are making a difference in New York and beyond. Anni Layne Rodgers

How Do I Begin Again?

How do we do our jobs in light of the calamitous events of September 11 — events that are bound to change forever how we think about work, life, and what really matters? Where do we go from here? What’s important now? Fast Company

The Power of Words

We’re hurt, angry, confused, sad. Where do we turn to make sense of what’s happened — and to move forward? To poets, songwriters, philosophers, and historical figures. Add your favorite quote here. Fast Company


Your Voice and Ours

The power of any community is a function of the strength of its connections. Join the global Fast Company community as it asks: Where do we go from here? What’s important now? How can we be of service? Fast Company


A CEO Grieves

The leader of Forrester Research, George F. Colony carries the weight of loss — of family members, Forrester’s president, and a friend aboard one of the hijacked flights. In a message to employees, Colony offered his perspective on grief. Fast Company

After Shock

Forensic psychiatrist Roy Lubit has spent the past two weeks at ground zero, counseling survivors and advising companies with traumatized workers. Here’s his advice on how to move beyond despair and get back to work. Ron Lieber


Battle Plan

Former U.S. Army lieutenant colonel Ralph Peters outlines nine strategies for understanding, fighting, and defeating new, nimble enemies. Rule #1: Culture is king. Anni Layne Rodgers

How to Mend Your Parachute

Like many things, the notion of career planning and job hunting has changed dramatically since September 11. Here, acclaimed author Richard Bolles offers five strategies for finding meaningful work in the face of an economic recession and a national crisis. Anni Layne Rodgers

Life After Death

Philosopher Peter Koestenbaum reflects on what the shock of death teaches us about leadership — and how to move forward without forgetting. Polly LaBarre


New Rules of the Road

What’s it like up there? Fast Company road warriors weigh in on contraband carry-ons, flight alternatives, and the new realities of airline travel. Add your flight stories to this report. Fast Company

On the Road Again?

In the wake of September’s hijackings, San Francisco bureau chief George Anders wrote a piece assessing life after the attack for business travelers. Then he boarded a plane for New Jersey. Here’s his account. George Anders

Time to Take Stock

Like the rest of the world, we at Fast Company are trying to make some sense of the horror that gripped our world last week. In an effort to understand the tragedy and its implications, we turned to mediation expert Susan Podziba. Anni Layne Rodgers