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Argues that a manager's central responsibility is to create and implement strategies, challenges popular motivational practices, and shares anecdotes discussing how to enable action-oriented plans for real-world results.
When Richard Rumelt's Good Strategy/Bad Strategy was published in 2011, it immediately struck a chord, calling out as bad strategy the mish-mash of pop culture, motivational slogans and business buzz speak so often and misleadingly masquerading as the real thing. Since then, his original and pragmatic ideas have won fans around the world and continue to help readers to recognise and avoid the elements of bad strategy and adopt good, action-oriented strategies that honestly acknowledge the challenges being faced and offer straightforward approaches to overcoming them. Strategy should not be equated with ambition, leadership, vision or planning; rather, it is coherent action backed by an argument. For Rumelt, the heart of good strategy is insight into the hidden power in any situation, and into an appropriate response - whether launching a new product, fighting a war or putting a man on the moon. Drawing on examples of the good and the bad from across all sectors and all ages, he shows how this insight can be cultivated with a wide variety of tools that lead to better thinking and better strategy, strategy that cuts through the hype and gets results.
Good Strategy/Bad Strategy clarifies the muddled thinking underlying too many strategies and provides a clear way to create and implement a powerful action-oriented strategy for the real world. Developing and implementing a strategy is the central task of a leader. A good strategy is a specific and coherent response to—and approach for—overcoming the obstacles to progress. A good strategy works by harnessing and applying power where it will have the greatest effect. Yet, Rumelt shows that there has been a growing and unfortunate tendency to equate Mom-and-apple-pie values, fluffy packages of buzzwords, motivational slogans, and financial goals with “strategy.” In Good Strategy/Bad Strategy, he debunks these elements of “bad strategy” and awakens an understanding of the power of a “good strategy.” He introduces nine sources of power—ranging from using leverage to effectively focusing on growth—that are eye-opening yet pragmatic tools that can easily be put to work on Monday morning, and uses fascinating examples from business, nonprofit, and military affairs to bring its original and pragmatic ideas to life. The detailed examples range from Apple to General Motors, from the two Iraq wars to Afghanistan, from a small local market to Wal-Mart, from Nvidia to Silicon Graphics, from the Getty Trust to the Los Angeles Unified School District, from Cisco Systems to Paccar, and from Global Crossing to the 2007–08 financial crisis. Reflecting an astonishing grasp and integration of economics, finance, technology, history, and the brilliance and foibles of the human character, Good Strategy/Bad Strategy stems from Rumelt’s decades of digging beyond the superficial to address hard questions with honesty and integrity.
Explains how companies must pinpoint business strategies to a few critically important choices, identifying common blunders while outlining simple exercises and questions that can guide day-to-day and long-term decisions.
Effective strategic thinking requires a clear understanding of one's external environment. Each organization has a unique environment, but as Ross Harrison explains in Strategic Thinking in 3D, any environment-whether in the fields of national security, foreign policy, or business-has three dimensions: systems, opponents, and groups.
Discover how to become an effective strategic thinker Some people seem to achieve the best results, again and again. Is it luck? Or is it strategy? How to Think Strategically equips you with the skills you need to make the best decisions and develop a powerful strategic mindset. This hands-on guide tackles both the thinking and the doing, helping you develop a robust strategic plan. It offers a six-step framework that addresses key questions, including: Which core challenges do I need to overcome? How do I manage uncertainty and risk? How do I execute my business strategy? Visit www.howtothinkstrategically.org for the accompanying app and the ‘Strategic Thinking Manifesto’.
Imagine, if you can, the world of business - without corporate strategy. Remarkably, fifty years ago that's the way it was. Businesses made plans, certainly, but without understanding the underlying dynamics of competition, costs, and customers. It was like trying to design a large-scale engineering project without knowing the laws of physics. But in the 1960s, four mavericks and their posses instigated a profound shift in thinking that turbocharged business as never before, with implications far beyond what even they imagined. In The Lords of Strategy, renowned business journalist and editor Walter Kiechel tells, for the first time, the story of the four men who invented corporate strategy as we know it and set in motion the modern, multibillion-dollar consulting industry: Bruce Henderson, founder of Boston Consulting Group Bill Bain, creator of Bain & Company Fred Gluck, longtime Managing Director of McKinsey & Company Michael Porter, Harvard Business School professor Providing a window into how to think about strategy today, Kiechel tells their story with novelistic flair. At times inspiring, at times nearly terrifying, this book is a revealing account of how these iconoclasts and the organizations they led revolutionized the way we think about business, changed the very soul of the corporation, and transformed the way we work.

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