A Masterful Analysis of Company, Customer, and Competition
Kenichi Ohmae-voted by "The Economist" as “ one of the world's top five management gurus” -changed the landscape of management strategy in "The Mind of the Strategist," In this compelling account of global business domination, Ohmae reveals the vital thinking processes and planning techniques of prominent companies, showing why they work, and how any company can benefit from them.
Filled with case studies of strategic thinking in action, Ohmae's classic work inspires today's managers to excel to new heights of bold, imaginative thinking and solutions.
“ In many ways, Ohmae can be considered the modern reincarnation of a much older guru, Adam Smith.” -"Journal of Marketing"
“ A fascinating window into the mind of one of Japan's premier strategists… full of ideas about how to improve strategic thinking.” -Michael E. Porter, Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University
Samurai-style business strategies (he says it himself) - with some striking marketplace applications. Ohmae is an MIT-trained Japanese management guru, head of the Tokyo office of McKinsey & Co., and the book is adapted from a Japanese original; it has the requisite recipe-for-success - "the combination of analytical method and mental elasticity that I call strategic thinking" - but it rests, intrinsically and more interestingly, on two precepts: gaining competitive superiority (lacking competition, you need improvements not strategy) and putting customer interests first. (Corporate freebooters who run myriad businesses "very much alike" - the prewar Japanese zaibatsu, current US conglomerates - seldom "sustain a profitable leadership position.") In Part I, "The Art of Strategic Thinking," Ohmae explains how to identify the key factors for success in each industry - by dissecting the market, by discovering what distinguishes winners from losers; and how to build on relative superority (quality, service), or challenge prevailing assumptions (an electric blanket to sleep on, a camera with a built-in flash), or exploit "strategic degrees of freedom" (instead of road-bound cars, bucking public transport, "helicopterlike vehicles"?). Part II, "Building Successful Strategies," focuses on "the three C's": the customer, the corporation, the competition. Studying "the fine shades of consumer wants" can lead to the introduction of new products (in Japan, costly-but-clean electric space heaters, in lieu of cheap-but-dirty kerosene) or the reallocation of resources (say, from group to individual sales). As for the corporation, it "does not have to have a clear lead in every function from sourcing to servicing. If it can gain a decisive edge in one key function, it will eventually be able to pull ahead. . . in other functions": witness the overall Japanese advance from an edge in production technology, in the '60s, to preeminence in quality control and product design, to today's leadership in basic research and direct marketing. (Or, read how the US instant-film competition could be wiped out - by "really speedy printing service.") There is much, much more - on international trends, on Japanese hyperdynamism, on the needful "will to cope with criticism, hostility, and even derision." Ohmae, an eclectic in the Peter Drucker vein, is instructive on every level. (Kirkus Reviews)
Part 1: The Art of Strategic Thinking
Chapter 1: Analysis- The Starting Point
Chapter 2: Four Routes to Strategic Advantage
Chapter 3: Focusing on Key Factors
Chapter 4: Building on Relative Superiority
Chapter 5: Pursuing Aggressive Initiatives
Chapter 6: Exploiting Strategic Degrees of Freedom
Chapter 7: The Secret of Strategic Vision
Part 2: Buidling Successful Strategies
Chapter 8: The Strategic Triangle
Chapter 9: Customer-Based Strategies
Chapter 10: Corporate-Based Strategies
Chapter 11: Competitor-Based Strategies
Chapter 12: Corporate Strategy
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Chapter 13: Understanding the Economic Environment
Chapter 14: Coping with Strategic Change
Chapter 15: Japan: Myths and Realities
Chapter 16: Foresighted Decision Making
Chapter 17: A Strategic Success Formula?