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What is the alternative if firms and individuals do not specialize?

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There is an old saying: “Jack of all trades; master of none.” What this means is that a generalist may be knowledgeable and skilled across a broad spectrum of activities but not represent the highest level of skill at any of those activities. Specialization requires long-term commitment to specific fields and subcategories.

A general practitioner is the logical first step for somebody suffering from an unidentified illness, but confirmation of the nature of the illness and its treatment involves specialists. The general contractor you hire to rebuild your kitchen or bathroom may know how to install dry wall, plumbing fixtures, and wiring but is unlikely to be the best at the latter two tasks. That is why, when a general contractor encounters difficulties on a job, he or she brings in a...

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