Modern management began with railroads. To increase productivity, companies built office buildings and filled them with managers, accountants, secretaries, and clerks.
The Singer Story
Singer was one of the first big businesses. Although the sewing machine was a breakthrough technology, success took more. The company excelled at clever marketing. It opened factories and sales offices around the world. A vast new office workforce maintained control and profitability. By 1900 Singer was multinational. Singer Manufacturing pioneered many new business techniques. It instituted installment sales, sought to develop a home-user market, modernized manufacturing, and expanded into international sales.
Operating an international business required fast, secure, and inexpensive communication. Writing telegraph messages in code made them shorter, cheaper, and more secure from industrial spies.