Customer Reviews


26 Reviews
5 star:
 (16)
4 star:
 (8)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Starting point for business strategy
Michael Porter is a Harvard Business School professor and a leading authority on competition and strategy. This book is a landmark in the field of strategy/strategic management, which later has become known as the positioning school. The book provides a great framework.
The book consists of three parts - General Analytical Techniques, Generic Industry Environments,...
Published on 29 Nov 2001

versus
14 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Figure out why you buy before you buy
This is emphatically not a work of strategy and and not a book about strategic analysis. I can't see how this would be practical or useful in a real "hands-on" business environment, although i can see how the more shallow CEOs may pick up on its buzzwords. Strictly speaking, this is a work of applied classical economics and as such has rigour and intellectual clarity,...
Published on 11 Jun 2004 by ZDDQ140770


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Starting point for business strategy, 29 Nov 2001
By A Customer
Michael Porter is a Harvard Business School professor and a leading authority on competition and strategy. This book is a landmark in the field of strategy/strategic management, which later has become known as the positioning school. The book provides a great framework.
The book consists of three parts - General Analytical Techniques, Generic Industry Environments, and Strategic Decisions. In addition, the two appendices - Portfolio Techniques in Competitor Analysis, and How to Conduct an Industry Analysis - should also be mentioned as they are very useful.
In Part I, Porter discussess the structural analysis of industries (with the world-famous five forces), the three generic competitive strategies (overall cost leadership, focus, and differentiation), an excellent framework for competitor analysis, competitive moves, strategy toward buyers and suppliers, structural analysis within industries (strategic groups, strategic mapping, mobility barriers), and industry evolution (life cycle, evolutionary processes).
In Part II, Porter discusses competitive strategy within various generic industry environments, such as fragmented industries (with no real market leader), emerging industries (e-commerce and Internet are excellent examples, although not mentioned in this book as it was written in 1980), mature industries, declining industries, and global industries.
In Part III, Porter discusses strategic decisions which businesses/firms can take, such as vertical integration (forward, backward, partnerships), capacity expansion, and entry into new industries/businesses.
Even after 20 years, most of this book still stands strong, although some people will argue this. It is a MUST for MBA-students and all other people interested in strategy/strategic management. The book is good to read (simple US-English) and thus does not become a struggle.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Important Are Competitors in Setting Future Strategy?, 28 May 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
Anyone would agree that this book is the best overview of competitive strategy analysis ever written. The strength of the book is a solid outline of subjects and questions to improve your thinking, and get to be a step ahead of the competition. In highly-competitive, commodity businesses, that's usually what strategies focus on.
On the other hand, the rapid advances of knowledge and technology mean that the relevant benchmark is perfection, not the competitor, in defining an ideal best practice. In that world, this book has serious limitations, because the competitive dimension is often less important than the customer and user dimension these days.
Any business arena begins, as Peter Drucker so aptly put it, with the task "to create a customer." That reminder is especially relevant today when they are so many new ways to serve a customer's needs that no one has ever considered before. The strategic point of 'Blown to Bits' for example is that almost every business will see its vertical value chain (moving from resources through to the customer) broken apart into tiny segments each served by specialists. If you did not begin with that perspective in analyzing the impact of electronically-based business practices, you could easily focus on the wrong tasks using this book to create an over-broad strategy focus, rather than concentrating on just a few areas.
I suspect that the applications of Moore's Law and Metcalfe's Law need to be explicitly considered as part of the analysis that Professor Porter is recommending.
A more general weakness in this book is that it assumes that future conditions will be stable enough to draw conclusions about which conditions will be favorable, without giving enough guidance on how to deal with the increasing frequencies and degrees of volatility that we see (in areas like financial markets, commodity prices, the weather, changing customer preferences, and so forth).
Although no book that takes such a narrow focus can help but have weaknesses (like having the podiatrist not notice that you have kidney problems), if you want a good start of how to think about competitors, this is the book for you. Just be sure you keep developing yours strategy with additional dimensions after you finish using this analysis.
If you have read none of Professor Porter's works, this is the one book you should read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beware, this is not a new book, 19 Nov 2007
By 
M. Eden "naxie" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors (Paperback)
I am very much looking forward to getting stuck into this book, but I personally feel misled by the publication date showing on Amazon and wanted to bring this to the attention of others.

I purchased this book because I was looking for something 'recent' on the topic of strategy. Whilst 2004 is not that recent, I have great respect for M Porter and so was happy that it was recent enough for my purposes.

Unfortunately, upon opening the book, I find that it is a 1980 book on strategy with a 2004 preface.

The content is still good but it kind of defeats the purpose if you are looking for some modern thoughts on and techniques relating to strategy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Starting point for business strategy, 31 Oct 2002
By 
Gerard Kroese (The Netherlands) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Michael E. Porter is a Harvard Business School professor and a leading authority on competition and strategy. This book is a landmark in the field of strategy/strategic management, and Porter's view has later become known as the positioning school. The book provides a great framework.
The book consists of three parts - General Analytical Techniques, Generic Industry Environments, and Strategic Decisions. In addition, the two appendices - Portfolio Techniques in Competitor Analysis, and How to Conduct an Industry Analysis - should also be mentioned as they are very useful.
In Part I, Porter discussess the structural analysis of industries (with the world-famous five forces), the three generic competitive strategies (overall cost leadership, focus, and differentiation), an excellent framework for competitor analysis, competitive moves, strategy toward buyers and suppliers, structural analysis within industries (strategic groups, strategic mapping, mobility barriers), and industry evolution (life cycle, evolutionary processes).
In Part II, Porter discusses competitive strategy within various generic industry environments, such as fragmented industries (with no real market leader), emerging industries (e-commerce and Internet are excellent examples, although not mentioned in this book as it was written in 1980), mature industries, declining industries, and global industries.
In Part III, Porter discusses strategic decisions which businesses/firms can take, such as vertical integration (forward, backward, partnerships), capacity expansion, and entry into new industries/businesses.
Even after 20 years, most of this book still stands strong, although some people will argue this. It is a MUST for MBA-students and all other people interested in strategy/strategic management. The book is good to read (simple US-English) and thus does not become a struggle.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Packed With Knowledge!, 16 Sep 2004
By 
Rolf Dobelli "getAbstract" (Switzerland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This seminal book is a classic and ought to be read by anyone in business. Michael E. Porter's ideas on competitiveness have lost little relevance despite the fact that he first advanced them in this book in 1980. They have now become so much a part of business practice and business language that one reads the book more with a sense of recognition than a sense of discovery. His prose style is clear and straightforward, albeit somewhat plodding, and the book can tend to repeat itself. However, Porter's clarity is a welcome change from the murk you encounter in many other books on business strategy, and his repetition serves a useful pedagogical purpose. We highly recommend this excellent book. If you're in business, it's relevant.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for your study, 1 Feb 2004
This review is from: Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors (Paperback)
Most people who buy this book will do so for thier study work. I am undertaking an MBA and this has proven invaluable for the dissertation. Its great to get down to the original text and interpret the theories for yourself.
If you were considering buying this book then consider no longer. It will help you get the grades you need.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful, but must be complemented with newer works on strate, 13 Dec 1999
By A Customer
The book is a brilliant insight into business strategy. It offers a very useful framework for industry analysis but will definitely benefit from a revision. The examples throughout the book are logical and easy to understand but could be replaced with newer ones. The book is not taking into account the impact of changes due to the growing use of the Internet by businesses. Nevertheless the framework remains surprisingly valid almost 20 years after the book was published for the first time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential read for MBA students...a good investment in time., 11 July 2001
By A Customer
This is not a high brow study based on unworkable theory. It provides a workable structure to building a strategy and gives tangeable examples to help create the vision and the tools to help acheive it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bible for understanding strategic management, 13 May 1999
By A Customer
Porter presents a comprehensive framework of analytical techniques to analyse industries and competitors in an understandable language. This book will help you understand industries and competitors, and will enable you to translate this knowledge into a competitive strategy. Each and every company builds its strategy on this book. His second book (Competitive Advantage) expands on this issue in far more detail, and is therefore very useful for the workout of strategy. Some additional information: Prof.Michael E. Porter (Harvard Business School) is the leading authority on the issue of competition.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have to read one book on Strategy, read this one., 12 April 1999
By A Customer
I've read this book many times and in each one I discover new things. Having used Michael Porter's theory to analyse the long term performance of the Brazilian Apparel Industry , the theory has been fully validated to even predict future financial results.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors
11.89
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews