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Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works [Englisch] [Gebundene Ausgabe]

A. G. Lafley , Roger L. Martin
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5. Februar 2013
This is A.G. Lafley's guidebook. Shouldn't it be yours as well? Winning CEO A.G. Lafley is now back at the helm of consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble. If you want to know the strategy he'll use to restore P&G to its former dominance--read this book. Playing to Win, a noted Wall Street Journal and Washington Post bestseller, outlines the strategic approach Lafley, in close partnership with strategic adviser Roger Martin, used to double P&G's sales, quadruple its profits, and increase its market value by more than $100 billion when Lafley was first CEO (he led the company from 2000 to 2009). The book shows leaders in any type of organization how to guide everyday actions with larger strategic goals built around the clear, essential elements that determine business success--where to play and how to win. Lafley and Martin have created a set of five essential strategic choices that, when addressed in an integrated way, will move you ahead of your competitors. They are: (1) What is our winning aspiration? (2) Where will we play? (3) How will we win? (4) What capabilities must we have in place to win? and (5) What management systems are required to support our choices? The result is a playbook for winning. The stories of how P&G repeatedly won by applying this method to iconic brands such as Olay, Bounty, Gillette, Swiffer, and Febreze clearly illustrate how deciding on a strategic approach--and then making the right choices to support it--makes the difference between just playing the game and actually winning. Playing to Win outlines a proven method that has worked for some of today's most celebrated brands and products. Let this book serve as your new guide to winning, as well.

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Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works + The End of Competitive Advantage: How to Keep Your Strategy Moving as Fast as Your Business
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"Winner -- Thinkers50 Best Book Award 2012 and 2013." -- Thinkers50 ( "Playing to Win is a rare tale from the front lines of business and from two of its smartest minds." -- Washington Post "[Playing to Win]: How Strategy Really Works may be the best business and strategy book I've read since Michael Porter. There is plenty of practical advice, including the fact that business people often confuse a vision for a strategy. Instead, the authors claim "winning through distinctive choices is the always-and-forever job of every strategist." -- Jonathan Becher, SAP via Lafley and Martin have artfully combined two virtues that don't often mix: rigor and brevity. Winning strategy doesn't come from inspirational happy-talk; it comes from deeply substantive hard thinking, and they tell us how it's done, with many examples. The book is short, crisp, a pleasure to read. -- Fortune "I doubt there are two more intelligent business minds out there than Lafley and Martin. Playing to Win meets the high expectations raised by those two names, and is the best business book I've read so far this year." -- Jack Covert, 800 CEO READ "clear and effective" -- (Wall Street Journal) "Read their book. They, in turn, are sure to inspire you." -- "I hate CEO books...[but]...this book totally rocks. It's a beautiful manual...a triumph. -- Tom Keene, Bloomberg TV "This is a fascinating tale, featuring a cast of familiar brands, including Pampers, Tide and Olay, each of which went through a transformation under Mr. Lafley's eye." -- The Economist "this new offering by former Procter & Gamble CEO Lafley (coauthor of The Game-Changer) and Martin (dean of the Rotman School of Management and author of Fixing the Game) is a clear standout...This collection of insights and captivating examples about strategy is a must-read for leaders at any level in the for-profit or not-for-profit world." -- Publishers Weekly "Strategy lessons, 101... a manual for strategy practitioners." -- Financial Times "The many stories from one of the biggest consumer goods firms in the world, with its many successes (and some failures too) along with the framework of the strategy to win, make this an interesting read." -- "a highly readable book that provides the reader with a very good understanding of the process and the real building blocks of value creation." -- Ottawa Business Journal "Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works--written by an impressive duo: former Procter & Gamble CEO A.G. Lafley and Dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto Roger Martin--is not just an insiders' tale of the workings of a successful global corporation. It's the story of how you can do what top brands do: Create and execute stellar strategy well. Lots of books are published about business strategy, many of them either badly written or not relevant to associations, or both. This one is an exception." -- Associations Now (ASAE: American Society of Association Executives) "interesting and thought-provoking work on business strategy" -- Business World "The best practitioner-focused strategy book I have ever read, and all the more useful for the fact it is concise, well-structured and compelling, with almost no jargon." -- Strategic Management Bureau "Unlike many management texts, which read as if written for CEOs of multi-billion-dollar businesses, these tales from the fast-moving consumer goods front are useful for acquiring, extending or defending market share at any size of company." -- The Deal: The Australian Business Magazine "I wish this book had been available to me earlier -- it would have been invaluable during my tenure at Britannia!" -- Sunil K. Alagh (Ex-CEO, Britannia Industries Ltd.) in Outlook Business "You're unlikely to find a more comprehensive guide to what strategy actually means and how to use it to your company's advantage." -- HR Magazine "As a mere student of life and an avid readers of business literature that is grounded in the practical and realistic realms, I found this (book) is a must read." -- Jonathan Yach (CEO, PropCare Mall Management) in Business World (India) "The book offers many inside stories about how P&G tackled strategy in various arenas, including examples of when it failed. That gives an even more practical flavour to this practical look at strategy, from two savvy strategy practitioners." -- The Globe & Mail "Sure to be a strategy classic. Book of the Month." -- Strategic Management Bureau "Set to become a classic text on strategy." -- Decision (Ireland) "a full vindication of P&G's strategic nous" -- Marketing Ireland "Two of today's best-known business thinkers get to the heart of strategy. The stories of how P&G repeatedly won by applying [Lafley and Martin's] method to iconic brands such as Olay, Bounty, and Gillette, clearly illustrate how deciding on a strategic approach--and then making the right choices to support it -- makes the difference between just playing the game and actually winning." -- Expert Marketer Magazine "a must-read book" -- American Express Open Forum "the book can be used by any business to help mesh everyday operations with long-term strategic objectives." -- Fort Worth Star Telegram "Playing to Win clearly elevates the discussion of strategy. It gets to the heart of what's important for a business leader." -- Business Standard "The book delivers on the title. It's a unique and nuanced view of strategy and its implementation. Highly recommended." -- Business Traveller ( "just about everyone trying to market anything these days could profit from this careful, well-done text on how to craft a strategy." -- Marketing Daily "an important addition to every decision-maker's library." -- Success magazine "Pick up the book to know how to create a triple crown: a win in China, a win in India, and a win at home; and to understand the differences and similarities between China and India." -- Business India "This valuable book is based on the two authors' years of experience working together and separately at P&G and Rotman School of Management. It is rich in examples and practical advice that show how organizations of all sizes can move beyond visions and plans to create judiciously plotted winning strategies." -- Developing Leaders ADVANCE PRAISE for Playing to Win: Daniel H. Pink, author, Drive and A Whole New Mind-- "Reading Playing to Win is like having prime seats at the Super Bowl of strategy. You'll learn the strategies consumer goods powerhouse Procter & Gamble uses to get its innovative products into millions of homes--plus tested methods for winning your own marketplace contests. If you're a marketer or a leader, you need to read this book." Sir Terry Leahy, former CEO, Tesco-- "This is the best book on strategy I have ever read. Lafley and Martin get to the heart of what's important: how to make choices in order to control events rather than allowing events to control your choices. Everyone wants to win; this book sets down with calm authority the steps you must take to turn aspiration into reality." Clayton M. Christensen, Kim B. Clark Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School; author, The Innovator's Dilemma-- "Lafley and Martin teach us how to develop and then how to deploy strategy. Their recommendations apply at every level--corporation, business units, products, and teams. This is a great book." Chip Heath, coauthor, Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work-- "Most authors conduct research before they write a book. Lafley and Martin went out and did something. They used their simple, subtle framework--Where will we play? How will we win?--to double the value of one of the world's greatest businesses. And now they're showing you how to do the same. Read this book... before your competitors find it." Jorgen Vig Knudstorp, CEO, Lego Group-- "Playing to Win is a rare combination of depth of thinking and ease of use. It clearly explains what business strategy is and isn't, and how to develop it. Lafley and Martin distill their hard-won experiences and offer insights, practical hands-on tools, and tips that will inspire and allow you to think strategically in new ways about your own business." Jack Welch, former Chairman and CEO, General Electric-- "A great CEO and a renowned educator join forces to create a must-read for anyone thinking about strategy." Scott Cook, cofounder and Chairman of the Executive Committee, Intuit-- "Here is business strategy through the eyes of the man who led Procter & Gamble's stunning turnaround and success in the 2000s and the strategist who advised and worked with him. Lush with insights that show the "what" and the "how" of two master strategists." James P. Hackett, President and CEO, Steelcase Inc.-- "Lafley and Martin have invested their respective careers in understanding the complexity of strategy. What has emerged in this seminal work is a simple and rich framework that can help business leaders think through strategic choices. It is an eminently helpful guide to choice making, which is the most essential part of leadership." Jim McNerney, President, CEO, and Chairman, Boeing-- "Playing to Win is an insightful do-it-yourself guide that demystifies what it takes to craft, implement, and continuously improve effective business strategies. Using relevant, real-world examples, Lafley and Martin offer proven techniques for competing and winning in today's challenging global business environment." Thomas Tull, founder and CEO, Legendary Pictures-- "I love this book; it is thought provoking and acts as a catalyst to ask questions--about ourselves and our business life course. In a day and age when information and instant communication are relentless components of business and our lifestyle, A. G. Lafley and Roger Martin suggest we take an important pause to actually question our strategic road maps and the associated plans we need in order to succeed in this marketplace."

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

A.G. Lafley has been named the new Chief Executive Officer, President, and Chairman of Procter & Gamble, where he previously served as CEO from 2000-2009. Under Lafley's leadership, P&G's sales doubled, its profits quadrupled, its market value increased by more than $100 billion, and its portfolio of billion-dollar brands--like Tide, Pampers, Olay, and Gillette--grew from 10 to 24 as a result of his focus on winning strategic choices, consumer-driven innovation, and reliable, sustainable growth. Roger Martin is Dean of the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management and an adviser to CEOs on strategy, design, innovation, and integrative thinking. In 2011, Roger was named by Thinkers50 as the sixth top management thinker in the world. This is his eighth book; he also contributes regularly to Harvard Business Review, the Financial Times, and the Washington Post, among others. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and an AB in economics from Harvard College.

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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The 101 for formulating a sound business strategy 17. Oktober 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
A tremendously informative book. Trust me, this is one of the most fundamental and no-nonsense business books on strategy. Sure business and management literature on strategy does fill whole libraries, but there is probably not a single book that explains in straight forward language, supported by believable and verifiable examples, how strategy formulation is done. The value of this book can't be stressed enough! It is a non-academic manual how to approach the process of strategy formulation. Lafely and Martin tell us, what strategy is and what it isn't. Strategy is about winning, winning in your "playground", which is the business area you chose to act and "play" in. And this brings you directly to the underlying principle of strategy: strategy is about choice, it is about your deliberate decision what to do and what not to do. To formulate your business strategy the authors present a cascade of "5 choices", which you have to go through and make, in order to become successful. You have to formulate a "winning aspiration" as a start. Then you have to decide "where to play" and "how to win". You have to think about and determine what your "core capabilities" are and which "management systems" to have in place to see your strategy implemented and working to plan. But this is not all, Lafely and Martin offer a framework and an approach to actually engage your management team to build a strategy from scratch. When you read through this book, you realize this to be a perfect manual with all the positive and also sometimes negative examples, where things either turned out as planed or sometimes not and the reasons behind it. What I liked most about this book is the understatement. The authors do not say: do this or that and follow our way and you will be successful. Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Nicht schlecht... 19. September 2014
Von ankaex
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
aber auch nicht mehr. Das nach solchen Büchern sich Weltfirmen ausrichten, ist schon interessant.
Naja, vielleicht brauchen die Manager halt auch mal ein Buch im Schrank.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen "Winning through distinctive choices is the job of every strategist" 9. Januar 2013
Von Erik Gfesser - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
The content of this book focuses on the transformation of Procter & Gamble (P&G) between 2000 and 2009, and discusses the approach to strategy that led to this transformation, leading to a doubling of sales, a quadrupling of profits, and an increased share price of more than 80 percent during that decade. The authors discuss that although many good strategic choices were made, the company also had its share of disappointments and failures. And most importantly, "no strategy lasts forever".

In my recent review of "Scenarios: The Art of Strategic Conversation (Second Edition)", by Kees van der Heijden, I mentioned that one of the best takeaways from what the author writes in that book is that "strategy is a highly dynamic area, full of fads and fashions that come and go", and that "copying ideas that 'work' for others is unlikely to be a winning strategy", because "success can only be based on being different from (existing or potential) competitors". The retrospective that Lafley and Martin provide in Appendix A would agree with these conclusions.

As explained by the authors, "strategies need continual improvement and updating", because as the authors have found, "competitors have copied P&G's strategies - on innovation, on branding, and the like - to an extent that renders P&G's resultant strategy less distinctive and decisive", and this is the challenge moving forward. In reflecting on its 175-year-plus history, the authors remark that "winning through distinctive choices is the always-and-forever job of every strategist", and if management continues to search for unique where-to-play and how-to-win choices that set the company apart, they should be able to further the success of the company.

Earlier in the text, the authors explain that many leaders tend to approach strategy in one of the following ineffective ways: (1) they define strategy as a vision, (2) they define strategy as a plan, (3) they deny that long-term (or even medium-term) strategy is possible, (4) they define strategy as the optimization of the status quo, or (5) they define strategy as following best practices. The authors argue that what really matters is winning, and that the play book discussed in this book, which provides five choices, a framework, and a process, is what is needed to win.

According to the authors, strategy is the answer to five interrelated questions: (1) What is your winning aspiration? (2) Where will you play? (3) How will you win? (4) What capabilities must be in place? and (5) What management systems are required? In chapters 2 through 6 of this book, the authors explain the nature of the choices to be made, provide a number of examples of each choice, and offer advice for making the choice given a context. These five choices comprise the "strategic choice cascade", the foundation of their strategy work.

In subsequent chapters, the authors present the "strategic logic flow" framework, designed to direct thinking to the key analyses that inform any strategy, and the "reverse engineering" methodology, designed to make sense of conflicting strategic options. In the former, there are four dimensions to be considered: (1) the industry, (2) customers, (3) relative position, and (4) competition. In the latter, which contrasts with traditional approaches to generating buy-in, there exist seven steps that involve exploring different ways forward and a wider variety of possible strategic choices.

As a consultant, I especially appreciated Chapter 1 ("Strategy = Choice"), which sets the stage by defining what strategy is all about, Chapter 7 ("Thinking Through Strategy"), which walks through industry analysis (segmentation and attractiveness), customer value analysis (channel and end consumers), analysis of relative position (capabilities and costs), and competitor analysis, and Chapter 8 ("Shortening Your Odds"), which explains that what is needed to find a winning strategy is to explore "what would have to be true" rather than "what is true", helping foster teams working together rather than battling one another, and surfacing differences and resolving them.

In addition, I appreciated the "Dos and Don'ts" sections at the end of each chapter, which clearly summarize the material from a practical context, as well as the strategic lessons learned side bars following these sections at the end of most of the chapters. At some level, I find the frankness that the authors share in these sections akin to how David H. Maister talks about his experiences in "Strategy and the Fat Smoker: Doing What's Obvious But Not Easy" (see my review), especially with regard to what Martin has to share at the end of Chapter 8 ("Shortening Your Odds"). Well recommended.
31 von 35 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Reads like a pretentious PowerPoint presentation 15. Mai 2013
Von Jared Castle - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
I'm not implying the strategy information is incorrect. I am saying it has a narrow epicenter of interest and those outside Proctor & Gamble and the Rotman School of Management are going to have a rough time staying interested.

In fairness, the book's title should be "P&G: A Look at Corporate Greatness."

I'm interested in winner-take-all strategies but I'm not captivated by overwrought anecdotes about "the P&G diaper business in emerging markets..."

Playing to Win reads like a pretentious PowerPoint presentation. This excerpt from page 125 illustrates my point:

"Why was the Gillette acquisition so successful for P&G? The answer is reinforcing rods; the P&G reinforcing rods drove powerfully through Gillette's activity system, especially in its crown jewel, the male shaving business. Strength in all five core capabilities enabled P&G to add value to the core Gillette business. By bringing Gillette into the P&G portfolio, P&G was able to add real value by sharing and transferring those capabilities."

That's five "P&Gs" and zero executions of "show don't tell."

You can still use it for a drinking game. Take a sip every time you read an acronym.

Use Amazon's preview function and pull up pages 40 and 41. Trust me, you'll be under the table before you reach page 43.

Rating: Two stars

DISCLOSURE: This review is courtesy of the Amazon Vine program, which provides products at no cost in exchange for my independent and unbiased feedback. My objective is to test and review products fairly, providing you with helpful information that improves your shopping experience. This product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf.

BTW: I once read a marketing tip that less is more. With 35 endorsements on the Amazon product page, the Harvard Business Review press failed to exercise restraint. "The lady doth protest too much, methinks."
32 von 37 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen "The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do." -- Michael Porter 6. Februar 2013
Von Robert Morris - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I am pleased that A.G. Lafley has co-authored another book, with Roger Martin, after previously co-authoring The Game Changer with Ram Charan. Whereas in the first the focus is on how to drive revenue and profit growth with innovation, the focus in this book is on how strategy really works. Most of the time it doesn't and reasons vary. However, Lafley and Martin identify these familiar troublemakers:

1. Defining strategy as a vision
2. Defining strategy as a plan
3. Denying that the long-term (or even the medium-term) strategy is possible
4. Defining strategy as the optimization of the status quo.
5. Defining strategy as following best practices

Rather, Lafley and Martin suggest that a strategy "is a coordinated and integrated set of five choices: a winning aspiration, where to play, how to win, core capabilities, and management systems." In this context, I am reminded of two recently published books. In Judgment Calls, Tom Davenport and Brooke Manville offer "an antidote for the Great Man theory of decision making and organizational performance": [begin italics] organizational judgment [end italics]. That is, "the collective capacity to make good calls and wise moves when the need for them exceeds the scope of any single leader's direct control." In Martin's brilliant book, The Opposable Mind, he calls this "integrative thinking." Winning the game (whatever its nature and extent) would thus require a strategy that is both inclusive and collaborative.

In Paul Schoemaker's latest book, Brilliant Mistakes, he observes: "The key question companies need to address is not `[begin italics] Should [end italics] we make mistakes?' but rather `[begin italics] Which [end italics] mistakes should we make in order to test our deeply held assumptions?'" The mistakes to which Schoemaker refers are deliberate. Their purpose is to help achieve strategic objectives. Those who play to win cannot be risk-averse. That is, play not to lose. If strategy is a set of choices "that uniquely positions the given enterprise so as to create sustainable advantage and superior value relative to the competition," and I believe it is, then quality of judgment is imperative, not only when making a specific choice but throughout a continuous and cohesive decision-making process.

These are among the dozens of passages I found to be of greatest interest and value, also listed to suggest the range of subjects covered during the course of the book's narrative:

o How to Win (Pages 24-29)
o Playing to Win (39-43)
o The Importance of the Right Playing Field, and, Three Dangerous Temptations (57-65)
o Differentiation Strategies (83-88)
o Gillette and the Strategic Choice Cascade (107-112)
o Understanding Capabilities and Activity Systems (112-119)
o Systems for Making and Renewing Strategy (129-136)
o Systems to Support Core Capabilities (144-149)
o Customer Value Analysis (167-171)
o Generating Buy-In: The Traditional Approach (183-200)
o The Importance of the Right Playing Field, and, The Dangerous Temptations Six Strategy Traps, and Six Telltale Signs of a Winning Strategy (214-216)

When concluding their book, A.G. Lafley and Roger Martin acknowledge, "All strategy entails risk. But operating in a slow-growing, fast-changing, intensely competitive world without a strategy to guide you is far riskier. Leaders lead, and a good place to start leading is in strategy development for your business. Use the strategic choice cascade [Pages 17-18 and 33-34], the strategy logic flow [161-177] and reverse engineering of strategic choices [186-200] to craft a winning strategy and sustainable competitive advantage for your organization. Play to win."

No brief commentary such as mine can possibly do full justice to the scope of material that A.G. Lafley and Roger Martin provide in this volume but I hope that I have at least suggested why I think so highly of their book. Also, I hope that those who read this commentary will be better prepared to determine whether or not they wish to read the book and, in that event, will have at least some idea of how an enriched and enlightened understanding of what strategy is -- and [begin italics] isn't [end italics] could perhaps be of substantial benefit to their professional development as well as to the success of their organization.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen One of the best business books ever written 7. Februar 2013
Von Marlon C. Sanders - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe

I've read probably 5000 books on business, sales, marketing, and competitive strategy.

I rank this as one of the best ever written. I don't say that flippantly.

Here is why this book will help you:

1. Even if you run a business with only a few employees as I have for years, or a home-based business as I currently do, the lessons apply equally as well.

If you're in business, you're selling something to someone. And this book like no other ever written spells out with amazing clarity the decisions you can make to win in the category or categories you're competing in.

The premise of the book is that the dollars you make in your business reflect your ability to profitably serve more customers, better. Then the book shows how you do that using 5 decisions every business, any business, has to make:

a. What's your winning aspiration: This is how you define winning.

b. Where will you play: What specific areas, categories, customers, consumers, segments, geographies, ages can you win in?

c. How will you win?

It's one thing to play in emerging areas or places you feel you can win with customers and consumers. It's quite another to know how you're going to win.

Michael Porter had a role in the thinking of Roger L. Martin from Rotterdam School of Business who worked with A. G. Lafley at P & G. What you'll appreciate is the ideas here are articulated much more simply than Porter. I really appreciated the examples of how to choose where to play based on the 5 forces. And how to make the difficult decisions that can involve.

2. The book helps you make crystal clear choices on where to play, that is, what categories, consumers, industries, or segments do you choose to win in.

There are a small number of books written exclusively about segmenting markets. Hundreds of books have chapters on it. Virtually every single of them talks about this in theory without really fantastic real-world examples that make your brain light up like a Christmas tree with ideas.

I grabbed a legal pad and started making notes on where-to-play ideas I got. For example, page 65 explains how Tide expanded distribution to channels where few competitors existed: drugstores, wholesale stores like Costco, dollar stores, vending machines, self service laundries and campgrounds.

That sparked a lot of ideas for me.

3. Loads of examples

Roger L. Martin conducted numerous interviews with Procter and Gamble employees as the basis for the examples in the book, which are very detailed and specific, unlike the generic, mindless examples you often see in books.

Did you know that Bounty is an upper end paper towel and only targets 3 segments of top end consumers? Yeah, I didn't either.

Did you know that the brand manager for Gain recommended zapping the product but a new product manager and a new strategy brought it back to life?

Did you know that Oil of Olay was struggling with a declining brand, aging customers and razor thin margins? That is, until a new where to play and how to win strategy turned it into a dynamo.

Those are things I can identify with. Any brand fights a problem of the brand declining. Consumers are aging but how do you avoid your brand dying with your aging consumers? See the plentiful Olay examples for the solution. How do you improve margins?

These are all fundamental issues I think most businesses struggle with.

4. This book shows you how to win in whatever arena you decide to play in

I like the clear thinking on how do you win in a category for a product or service and what do you do if you're not winning?

In business, it's so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day activities that you forget about things like winning in a category. With the clearest thinking I've read anywhere in any business book, you'll get practical answers you can apply to whatever your business is.

Marlon Sanders
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2.0 von 5 Sternen Worthless for most business owners 25. Juni 2013
Von Big Daddy - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
I generally don't give too many bad reviews. My reviews are based on whether I get enough positive information to make it worth my time and the expense of reading the book. But I really find few redeeming qualities in this book. Despite all of the raving reviews by people who are supposedly "in the know," this book falls short. First, it is incredibly boring. You can look at my other reviews and see that my threshold for boring is much lower than most people, so if I say it is boring, it is B-O-R-I-N-G. Second, it is useless for the typical business owner. The book might have some value for S&P 500-type companies where group-think is the order of the day, but beyond that, I didn't see much useful information in it.

It was somewhat interesting to see how consumers are manipulated by product branding and product placement and this book does give an insider's perspective of how that works. And as someone who once lived near a large concentration of P&G employees, the book does provide some insight as to why they seemed brainwashed.

As for the strategic information, I consider it to be repackaged fluff that you have probably read or heard before. It's mostly common sense anyway.
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