Allen's Allies: The Shaker Uppers At At&T

A year ago, on the day executives from American Telephone & Telegraph Co. and McCaw Cellular Communications Inc. sat down to negotiate for the first time, AT&T's Alex J. Mandl arrived at work sporting jeans and a polo shirt--the kind of clothes McCaw executives wear at their offices. "It seemed like the right gesture," says Gary Friedman, a lawyer who represented McCaw during the talks. But the wrong time and place: Craig O. McCaw and his entourage filed into AT&T's Basking Ridge (N.J.) headquarters in gray suits, leaving Mandl the only one present without a tie.

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